HONK KONG — Another year, another variant.Much like last year, 2021 is ending with the emergence of a new form of the coronavirus, dashing hopes that the end of the pandemic might be in sight.And although so far the new variant, omicron, seems to have milder symptoms and lower rates of hospitalization and death, many countries around the world are erring on the side of caution and scaling back plans to ring in the New Year.There will be no traditional displays above most of the world’s landmarks, with fireworks cancelled over Paris’s Arc de Triomphe, London’s Big Ben and the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur.A notable exception is Australia, the first country to pronounce itself past its omicron wave. Here, the traditionally spectacular fireworks over Sydney Harbor proceeded despite a growing outbreak.“What I would like people to do tomorrow night is enjoy the evening,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said at a news conference on Thursday.Dominic Perrottet of New South Wales, which includes Sydney, said this week that people should “head out and enjoy New Year’s,” even as the state reported a daily record of more than 20,000 cases on Friday.Thanks to omicron, the New Year began its annual roll from


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