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Expo 2020 Dubai transforms into big party as night falls




As night falls on Expo 2020 Dubai, everything is just getting more fantastic. The cool breeze caresses the faces of visitors, healing them from a day of fatigue and breathing refreshing joviality into them.

People sit in outdoor cafes or restaurants, enjoying authentic food from China, Japan, Lebanon, France, and Morocco. The air smells of popcorn, ice cream, Columbian coffee, and hotdogs.

Photo taken on Jan. 9, 2022 shows the Al Wasl Plaza of Expo 2020 Dubai in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. (Xinhua/Wang Dongzhen)

The sound is pleasant too. Whether you are walking on the main avenues or wandering in alleys, you can always hear kids laughing, crickets chanting, and people exclaiming in awe.

And, of course, there is music. For every two or three pavilions you pass by, you can find art performances outside the gate. The artists are singing, making acrobatic performances, or just sitting there playing guitars or ouds while the visitors applaud and cheer.

But what really makes the Expo fantastic at night is the light.

At the China Pavilion, a special light show powered by China’s advanced technologies in drone manufacturing and the BeiDou navigation satellite system, is one of the most-watched performances at the Expo.

Photo taken on Jan. 9, 2022 shows the Iraq Pavilion of Expo 2020 Dubai in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. (Xinhua/Wang Dongzhen)

The roof of the Iraq Pavilion, which represents the ancient Mesopotamian civilization’s fishing tradition, is lit up and transforms into a gleaming, fluid curve that comes to life.

Photo taken on Jan. 9, 2022 shows the Russia Pavilion of Expo 2020 Dubai in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates.
(Xinhua/Wang Dongzhen)

The colorful facade of the Russia Pavilion has been brought to the next level as the daylight wanes. The shining, colorful, and enticing curves of the pavilion have become “surreal” when the lights are turned on.

Almost every pavilion has designed special light displays that make the facades more enthralling and dreamlike

“I especially love the night. All the lights and activities make me feel more like a carnival,” said Inga Vasilieva, a Russian visitor. “I feel like I’m inside Disneyland now, and even cooler.”

Photo taken on Jan. 9, 2022 shows the performance of Al Wasl Plaza of Expo 2020 Dubai in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. (Xinhua/Wang Dongzhen)

At Al Wasl Plaza, the center of the Expo site, a gigantic dome has been put up. Every night, the dome becomes a 360 degree, 25,380 square meters projection surface.

On the screen, everything has become larger-than-life and brings overwhelming emotions to the people standing under the dome. Inside the garden of the plaza, people are just lying on the ground and watching the dome’s display. Children are running around, exclaiming excitedly every now and then.

Two children take photos at the entrance of Expo 2020 Dubai, on Jan. 9, 2022, in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. (Xinhua/Wang Dongzhen)

Strolling inside the Expo at night is like walking into a great party, which almost makes you forget about the COVID-19 pandemic, except for the part where the security men are reminding everyone to properly wear their masks.

Everyone who enters the Expo is required to present a recent PCR negative result. Other social distance regulations are also enforced here. Despite the recent hike in COVID-19 cases in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the Expo remains a high turnout as winter is the peak tourist season for Dubai.

According to official data, Expo 2020 Dubai recorded 8,958,132 visits from Oct. 1 to Dec. 31, 2021.

“I think we can have a normal life, or at least what is close to one, if we can be careful enough,” said Ahmed Latif, a UAE visitor said.

DUBAI, (Xinhua)

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England lifts COVID-19 pandemic restriction-Omicron marks end of the pandemic.





England has lifted its restrictions implemented in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Speaking at a press conference at Downing Street, Health Secretary Sajid Javad stated that the England will be lifting the restrictions implemented in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic but the legal requirement to self-isolate if tested positive for the virus will continue.

While Health Secretary Sajid Javad stated that it was a major milestone, he also stated that “It’s not the end of the road and we shouldn’t see this as the finish line because we cannot eradicate this virus and its future variants. Instead we must learn to live with Covid in the same way we have to live with flu”.

This has also meant that the work-from-home guidance would be ending with the majority of the nation’s workforce reverting to pre-pandemic work schedules. Additionally, students will also be no longer required to wear masks at schools.

Moreover, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has also confirmed that the Government plans to end the legal requirement for positive cases to isolate by late March, but may move the date forward.

The U.S. has also hinted that the pandemic may be heading towards an end. Chief Medical Advisor to the President of the United States, Dr. Anthony Fauci has stated that the Omicron variant may mark the end of the pandemic.

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New Japanese Ambassador Takeuchi Midori presents her credentials to President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.





The new Japanese ambassador to the Maldives, Takeuchi Midori has presented her credentials to President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

Ambassador Takeuchi Midori presented her credentials to President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih at a special ceremony held earlier today at the President’s Office.

Speaking at the ceremony President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih noted on the Ambassador Takeuchi Midori’s predecessor Keiko Yanai’s work in enhancing bilateral relations between the two nations. President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih expressed hope in continuing to further strengthen the bilateral relations between the two nations under Ambassador Takeuchi Midori tenure.

Ambassador Takeuchi Midori also spoke at the ceremony, noting that this year marks the 55th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the Maldives and Japan. She expressed hope that the two nations would work together on regional and global issues.

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China’s homemade C919 passenger plane to be delivered this year





China’s self-developed C919 large passenger aircraft will be delivered within this year, The Paper reported on Wednesday, citing its developer.

Wu Yongliang, deputy general manager of the Shanghai-based Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC), said the pandemic’s impact on the C919 project has been controllable, and the work is progressing in an orderly manner.

American aerospace manufacturer Boeing and France-based Airbus have long been the so-called duopoly in the commercial airline market worth trillions of U.S. dollars.

The C919, as part of China’s goal to develop homemade civil airplanes, is trying to rival with medium-range aircraft from the two global giants, such as Airbus’s A320 and Boeing’s 737 MAX.

C919 has 158 to 168 seats, a standard range of 4,075 kilometers and a maximum range of 5,555 kilometers. It had its successful maiden flight in 2017.

China Eastern Airlines, one of the country’s largest airlines also headquartered in Shanghai, signed a contract to buy five C919 jetliners from COMAC in March 2021.

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