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New Year’s Crystal Ball in New York | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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The Ball

The Ball

The Ball

2016 is drawing closer, and celebrations across the world are being prepared. Despite the unkind events of terrorism that haunted its precedent year, people are still preparing enthusiastically for the midnight strike that will announce a whole new year. A lot of hopes and wishes are based on a new start.

New York City prepares on welcoming the New Year with a 6 ton confetti crystal ball that will be lowered over Times Square amid the security measures taken by dispatching 6 thousand policemen that will be working on New Year’s Eve for ensuring the safety of those celebrating one of the city’s highest-profile event.

Reuters – “We are ready,” Mayor Bill de Blasio told a news conference on Tuesday. “We are the best prepared city in the country, the best prepared city to prevent terrorism and to deal with any event that could occur.”

An approximated one million people are expected in the locale of One Times Square on Thursday for the New Year’s Eve dropping of the ball, a tradition carried out since 1907 and broken only during wartime blackouts.

In the repercussion of Islamist-inspired attacks in San Bernardino, California, and Paris, the city will draw on its new Critical Response Command counterterrorism unit, which includes more heavily armed officers, to patrol Times Square. The unit, trained to detect and respond to attack plots, was commissioned days before the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Officers communicating with smart phones and loud speakers will be authorized to shut down the event at any time and evacuate the area, Police Commissioner William Bratton said, adding that there were no known credible threats against New York City.

In November after the Paris attacks that left 130 people dead, the Islamic State militant group, also known as ISIS, released a video showing a glimpse of Times Square and then a suicide bomber.