Feb. 10 - Chinese communities around the world usher in the Lunar New Year with wild parties and solemn prayers. Andrew Raven reports.
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Ushering in the Year of the Snake with a prayer.
On Sunday, people around the world celebrated the Lunar New Year - the most important festival on the Chinese calendar.
Hundreds flocked to this 300-year-old temple in Beijing, braving freezing temperatures and hangovers.
As is tradition, they burned incense and prayed for a prosperous year.
(SOUNDBITE)(Mandarin) BEIJING RESIDENT LIU XUEMEI SAYING:
"I hope that my child is healthy, safe and happy. I don't want to give my child too much pressure. All I want is for her to be safe, healthy and happy."
In the Philippines, hundreds crowded into Manilla's Chinatown to mark the Lunar New Year - and bid farewell to the Year of the Dragon.
Many, like this woman, hoped the year would bring smoother relations between China and its neighbours, which are locked in a series of territorial disputes.
The Lunar Year celebrations will last for 15 days.
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