- Title: Huge crowds celebrate New Year at Berlin's Brandenburg Gate
- Date: 1st January 2017
- Summary: BERLIN, GERMANY (JANUARY 01, 2017) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF FIREWORKS AT BERLIN'S BRANDENBURG GATE
- Embargoed: 16th January 2017 01:10
- Keywords: New Year celebrations Berlin Brandenburg Gate
- Location: BERLIN, GERMANY
- City: BERLIN, GERMANY
- Country: Germany
- Topics: Living/Lifestyle,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA0015F7OX1J
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: People from all over the world chose Berlin to welcome 2017 with a big party at the city's landmark, the Brandenburg Gate, on Saturday (December 31st).
Wearing funny hats and eye-catching costumes, people partied along the avenue between the Brandenburg Gate and the Victory Column which was transformed into a colourful dance festival as the midnight fireworks display marked the end of 2016 and the start of the new year.
The New Year's party in Berlin is one of the biggest in Europe with stages, bands and stands placed along the central roads to provide visitors with music, drink, food and merriment whilst fireworks explode over the city's main landmark.
The New Year started peacefully but with very tight security after last week's attack in the German capital which killed 12 people and injured 48 others when a 24-year old Tunisian deliberately ploughed a hijacked truck into a crowd of Christmas market visitors.
Berlin police deployed 1,700 extra officers at the open air party where armoured cars flanked concrete barriers to block off the area.
"Due to the attack on Breitscheidplatz we had to tighten security measures. That means that, compared to other years, we had to work with concrete blocks, special vehicles which are aimed at preventing people from breaking through and we placed heavy vehicles around which are not easy to move," Andreas Sydow, the police chief in charge told Reuters TV.
"What happened on the 19th of December is still too fresh. It was important for the people of Berlin and the tourists to have a safe New Year's party. And we did our part," he added, saying that he did not know whether measures would be increased in coming years.
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