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Fireworks kick off New Year celebrations in Germany, Russia

Berlin/Moscow: At Berlin's Brandenburg Gate, hundreds of thousands of people gathered Tuesday night for what organizers claimed to be one of the world's biggest outdoor New Year's parties.It was billed as a traditional German gathering
India TV News Desk January 01, 2014 10:23 IST
India TV News Desk
Berlin/Moscow: At Berlin's Brandenburg Gate, hundreds of thousands of people gathered Tuesday night for what organizers claimed to be one of the world's biggest outdoor New Year's parties.

It was billed as a traditional German gathering featuring jelly doughnuts and sparkling wine, but featured the usual countdown to midnight followed by a huge fireworks display.

Thousands of Muscovites enjoyed a huge firework display in the Russian capital on Tuesday night to see in the new year.

Temperatures were above zero, unusually for the time of year, and there was no snow.

But it seemed the fireworks, which were set off in the sky above the Kremlin, St Basil's Cathedral and Red Square provided ample compensation.

"I enjoyed the fireworks very much, it was not ordinary. Last year it was much more basic," said one local resident.

The festive spirit in Russia has been overshadowed by two suicide bombings in Volgograd last week that killed 34 people and injured around 70.

As a result enhanced security measures were introduced in Moscow and long lines formed in front of security gates for those visitors arriving to view the midnight fireworks.

But the extra security did not dampen Moscow resident Veronika Buksha's optimism.

"I wish everybody this year to be very lucky, very good and peaceful. No wars, no conflicts. I wish everybody to be happy. And no catastrophes," she said.

The New Year celebrations also marked the start of the holiday season in Russia, as everyone will now officially be off work and school until January 9.