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Fireworks, Parades Begin Chinese Year of the Monkey


A Malaysian ethnic Chinese man offer prayers under the illuminated traditional Chinese lanterns on the eve of Lunar New Year in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016.

A Malaysian ethnic Chinese man offer prayers under the illuminated traditional Chinese lanterns on the eve of Lunar New Year in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016.

Celebrations are kicking off around the world to mark the new Chinese year - the Year of the Monkey.

Chinese New Year 4713 starts on February 8 of this year. Unlike the Western holiday, which starts the night before and ends the next day, the traditional celebration of Chinese New Year goes for 15 days, ending with the annual Lantern Festival.

The holiday also marks the world's largest period of mass migration, as millions of people travel to be with their families for the holiday.

Restrictions on setting off fireworks coupled with an economic slowdown appeared to tame the celebrations across China.

Celebrations were missing in Taiwan, still dazed one day after a 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck. The streets in Tainan, near the earthquake's epicenter, remained empty as midnight approached.

Search and rescue workers prayed late Sunday at Wu-Long-Kuong Temple in Tainan, lighting incense and bowing in front of several Daoist and Buddhist deities.

But fireworks and parades welcomed the new year in cities from Sydney to Lisbon.

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