Dubai hotel blazes as 2016 begins

New Zealand, Australia, Japan, and Thailand were among the countries to have welcomed in 2016 in style, while Dubai went ahead with its spectacular fireworks display as planned while fire crews battled a blaze that engulfed a nearby skyscraper.

It was not immediately clear what caused the fire, which ran up at least 20 storeys of the building near the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest skyscraper at 828m.

Burning debris rained down as firefighters raced to the scene. Injuries were reported but despite the scale of the task facing the emirate’s firefighters, the festivities continued nearby.

Earlier, New Zealand counted down the seconds to midnight with a giant digital clock on Auckland’s Sky Tower .

In Australia, fireworks erupted along Sydney Harbour, where people crowded onto balconies, into waterside parks and onto boats as they jockeyed for the best view .

In Japan, millions crammed into trains to flee the cities for their home towns to slurp down noodles, symbolising longevity, while watching the Red and White NHK song competition.

Meanwhile, China held an official celebration near Beijing’s Forbidden City.

Dubai hotel blazes as 2016 begins


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