Wuhan, once world’s COVID-19 epicenter, celebrates 2021 with large crowds

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The Chinese city of Wuhan — once the world’s epicenter of the COIVD-19 outbreak — saw large crowds taking to the streets to ring in the new year.

Photos of the festivities show some revelers wearing masks and little to no social distancing as they released balloons into the air at Hankow Customs House building — a popular New Year’s Eve spot in Wuhan, according to Reuters.

Police were seen trying to control the crowds and even urged people without masks to put one on if they wanted to continue the celebration, the outlet reported.

The festivities come a year after the World Health Organization said it first received an alert about a cluster of pneumonia cases in Wuhan — which later resulted to be first the world’s first coronavirus outbreak.

WHO experts are expected to meet in China in January to investigate where the virus first originated.

Some countries such as France and Spain rang in the new year with curfews imposed on the public. In Australia and New Zealand, people celebrated 2021 as they normally would before the pandemic.

Back in New York, Times Square was a ghost town where police closed off the area as people prepared to watch the famous ball drop from home.

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