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    Jakarta, Indonesia Celebrates Chinese New Year's Eve


    by NTDTelevision

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    And in Indonesia, the Lunar New Year Eve has roused the spirit of holiday celebration in Indonesia. Various activities were held to welcome the coming of the Year of the Rabbit. Our correspondents in Jakarta report.

    Jakarta's ethnic Chinese community held various activities to welcome the Lunar New Year Wednesday.

    About ten thousand ethnic Chinese thronged to the Dharma Bhakti temple in Jakarta's Chinatown to mark the occasion.

    Some were praying, while others were burning fireworks or searching for tuberose flowers to take home as part of the Chinese New Year tradition.

    The Chinese New Year summit occurred at around 11:50 at night. This time is believed by the ethnic Chinese community as the right time to express their hope for the New Year.

    [Isyang, Jakarta Resident]:
    "May the Indonesian government be more prosperous, more successful, and may all of the people in Indonesia can live in rejoice."

    Indonesian Chinese have only been allowed to celebrate the Lunar New Year since 2000, when the country's former president repealed a decree passed by his predecessor Suharto in 1967, banning the ethnic Chinese from celebrating the New Year in public.

    [Angel, Jakarta Resident]:
    "I hope in this new year of the rabbit... hopefully everything becomes better, all beings be happy, and the Indonesian people can be more prosperous... I hope there are no more riots, and everybody can live in peace."

    [Hengky Halim, Jakarta Resident]:
    "This is the year of the wooden rabbit. If the wood element is facing the fire element, it will easily burn. Chinese people say that the element of wood is very good if facing the water element, it will be fertile. If the rain comes, it will be fertile. So if the rain happenes in the year of wooden rabbit, it will bring good fortune, which is also the hope of every ethnic Chinese."