BEJING (AP) — People around Asia ushered in the Year of the Tiger on Tuesday, celebrating the Lunar New Year with colorful decorations, wild dances, tributes to their ancestors and prayers for good fortune in the year to come.
It is the third Lunar New Year since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, and again celebrations were more subdued than usual, with people taking strict health and safety precautions, and some traditional festivities either reduced in size or cancelled.
Each year is named after one of twelve signs of the Chinese zodiac in a repeating cycle. The Year of the Tiger follows the Year of the Ox.
Not surprisingly, depictions of the tiger featured heavily in this year’s decorations, some traditional and others more modern, like robotic-themed tigers at a mall in Beijing.
In the Japanese capital, the Tokyo Tower was illuminated in red with a display to celebrate the diplomatic relationship between Japan and China, and the Beijing Winter Olympics.
In North Korea, people visited statues of former leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il on Mansu Hill in Pyongyang, and in South Korea, North Korean refugees visited the Imjingak Pavilion near the border dividing the Korean peninsula to pay tribute to their ancestors.
In Cambodia, ethnic Chinese people performed a traditional dragon dance in Phnom Penh, while people prayed for good fortune at the Tai Hong Kong Shrine in Bangkok, Thailand.