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Ethnic dancers from southwest China's Yunnan province perform at the Ditan park temple fair in Beijing on January 30, 2014, on the eve of the Lunar New Year. / By Goh Chai Hin, AFP/Getty Images

BEIJING (AP) - Chinese communities around the world are gearing up Thursday for the Lunar New Year holiday that begins at midnight.

Mainland China will virtually shut down for the next seven days, and many residents of the polluted capital, Beijing, already have departed for holiday destinations. A continuing campaign against waste and corruption foreshadows more modest celebrations this year, while a crackdown on air pollution seems to be reining in the usual orgy of fireworks.

Airports, train and bus stations have seen a crush of holiday travelers, with migrant workers making the lengthy trip back to their rural hometowns and prosperous urban dwellers heading to vacations abroad.

On self-governing Taiwan, revelers jammed into the capital Taipei's historic shopping district to load up on holiday snacks.

Koreans and Vietnamese also celebrate the holiday.



Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Read the original story: Chinese communities prepare for Lunar New Year

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