As the world says goodbye to 2020, there were countdowns and live performances, but no massive jubilant crowds in traditional gathering spots like Ortaköy Square in Istanbul and New York City's Times Square this New Year's Eve.
In this combo of images, a few people, in the top image, stand in the plaza in front of the Ottoman-era Mecidiye Mosque in Ortaköy Square under the July 15th Martyrs' Bridge over the Bosporus, separating Europe and Asia, in Istanbul, Turkey, Dec. 31, 2020. In the bottom image, people celebrate the new year at the same spot, early Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020.
This combo image shows in the top photo fireworks exploding over the Kremlin and the Spasskaya Tower with St. Basil's Cathedral at left in an almost empty Red Square during New Year's celebrations in Moscow, Russia, Dec. 31, 2020, and below, a file photo taken from the same angle during New Year's celebrations on Dec. 31, 2019.
The top photo in this combo image shows an ambulance and press photographers waiting on the otherwise empty street opposite the London Eye Ferris wheel in London, Dec. 31, 2020, and in the bottom photo taken in the same place, people wait to take photos of fireworks over the London Eye Ferris wheel as midnight approaches on Dec. 31, 2019.
An image combo shows fireworks exploding over the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge during New Year's celebrations in Sydney, Australia in the top photo taken on Jan. 1, 2021, and the bottom one on Jan. 1, 2015. From a distance, things looked the same, but 1 million people would usually crowd Sydney Harbor to watch the annual fireworks that center on Sydney Harbour Bridge.
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