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IN PHOTOS: How the world celebrated Christmas

/ 05:06 PM December 26, 2016

Take a look at how how nations from all over the world celebrated Christmas Day in their own unique way.

Pope Francis kisses a statue of Baby Jesus as he celebrates the Christmas Eve Mass in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Pope Francis kisses a statue of Baby Jesus as he celebrates the Christmas Eve Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

A statue of Baby Jesus is displayed during the Christmas Eve Mass celebrated in St. Peter's Basilica by Pope Francis at the Vatican, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. The pontiff urged Christians to celebrate the birth of Jesus by thinking about the plight of today's children, bemoaning how they're forced to hide to escape bombs or flee in a migrant boat or how they’re prevented from being born entirely. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

A statue of Baby Jesus is displayed during the Christmas Eve Mass celebrated in St. Peter’s Basilica by Pope Francis at the Vatican, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. The pontiff urged Christians to celebrate the birth of Jesus by thinking about the plight of today’s children, bemoaning how they’re forced to hide to escape bombs or flee in a migrant boat or how they’re prevented from being born entirely. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Pope Francis (C) celebrates a mass on Christmas eve marking the birth of Jesus Christ on December 24, 2016 at St Peter's basilica in Vatican. / AFP PHOTO / ANDREAS SOLARO

Pope Francis (C) celebrates a mass on Christmas eve marking the birth of Jesus Christ on December 24, 2016 at St Peter’s basilica in Vatican. / AFP PHOTO / ANDREAS SOLARO

People wearing fancy dress clothes prepare to jump into the Mediterranean sea as they take part in the Copa Nadal in the Spanish port of Barcelona, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. The Copa Nadal (Christmas Cup) is a traditional swimming competition that takes place in Barcelona every December 25th, where participants swim 200 meters in the open sea in the port of Barcelona. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

People wearing fancy dress clothes prepare to jump into the Mediterranean sea as they take part in the Copa Nadal in the Spanish port of Barcelona, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. The Copa Nadal (Christmas Cup) is a traditional swimming competition that takes place in Barcelona every December 25th, where participants swim 200 meters in the open sea in the port of Barcelona. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

A man dressed as Santa Claus poses for photos in front of a Christmas tree installation during Christmas eve as they celebrate the festival season in Hong Kong, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

A man dressed as Santa Claus poses for photos in front of a Christmas tree installation during Christmas eve as they celebrate the festival season in Hong Kong, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

A Filipino domestic helper is helped by her friends to dress up as a Christmas tree made with recycled materials and leaves as they hold a costume contest to celebrate the festival season in Hong Kong, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

A Filipino domestic helper is helped by her friends to dress up as a Christmas tree made with recycled materials and leaves as they hold a costume contest to celebrate the festival season in Hong Kong, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

A woman and her child wearing Santa Claus hats pose for a souvenir photo in front of a Christmas tree decorated at a shopping mall in Beijing, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. Although Christmas is not traditionally celebrated in China, shopping malls and retailers welcome the festival by organizing activities to attract shoppers as a chance to boost the year-end sales. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

A woman and her child wearing Santa Claus hats pose for a souvenir photo in front of a Christmas tree decorated at a shopping mall in Beijing, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. Although Christmas is not traditionally celebrated in China, shopping malls and retailers welcome the festival by organizing activities to attract shoppers as a chance to boost the year-end sales. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

A man and his daughter pose for a selfie while riding on a carousel at a shopping mall with Christmas decorations in Beijing, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. Although Christmas is not traditionally celebrated in China, shopping malls and retailers welcome the festival by organizing activities to attract shoppers as a chance to boost year-end sales. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

A man and his daughter pose for a selfie while riding on a carousel at a shopping mall with Christmas decorations in Beijing, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. Although Christmas is not traditionally celebrated in China, shopping malls and retailers welcome the festival by organizing activities to attract shoppers as a chance to boost year-end sales. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

This picture taken on December 24, 2016 shows a cross-bearer preparing to enter the church for Christmas Eve mass at a Catholic church in Beijing as Christians around the world prepare to celebrate the holy day. / AFP PHOTO / WANG ZHAO

This picture taken on December 24, 2016 shows a cross-bearer preparing to enter the church for Christmas Eve mass at a Catholic church in Beijing as Christians around the world prepare to celebrate the holy day. / AFP PHOTO / WANG ZHAO

People are silhouetted against illuminations for the Christmas and New Year holiday season at Ilsan Lake Park in Goyang, South Korea, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

People are silhouetted against illuminations for the Christmas and New Year holiday season at Ilsan Lake Park in Goyang, South Korea, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

A kissing couple is silhouetted against illuminations celebrating the Christmas and New Year holiday season at Ilsan Lake Park in Goyang, South Korea, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

A kissing couple is silhouetted against illuminations celebrating the Christmas and New Year holiday season at Ilsan Lake Park in Goyang, South Korea, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

A boy skis along a street near Montreal, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press via AP)

A boy skis along a street near Montreal, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press via AP)

Indians light candles and pray at the decorated Saint Joseph's Cathedral on the Christmas eve in Lucknow, India, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. Though the Hindus and Muslims comprise majority of the population in India, Christmas is a national holiday celebrated with much fanfare. (AP Photo/Rajesh Kumar Singh)

Indians light candles and pray at the decorated Saint Joseph’s Cathedral on the Christmas eve in Lucknow, India, Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. Though the Hindus and Muslims comprise majority of the population in India, Christmas is a national holiday celebrated with much fanfare. (AP Photo/Rajesh Kumar Singh)

A priest conducts Christmas prayers at the holy family Catholic Church, in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. Christmas is a national holiday in India, marked by millions of all religions and faiths. (AP Photo/Mukhtar Khan)

A priest conducts Christmas prayers at the holy family Catholic Church, in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. Christmas is a national holiday in India, marked by millions of all religions and faiths. (AP Photo/Mukhtar Khan)

A man dressed as Santa Claus distributes sweets and balloons to children on the occasion of Christmas outside a Church in Gauhati, India, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. Though Hindus and Muslims comprise the majority of the population in India, Christmas is a national holiday celebrated with much fanfare. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

A man dressed as Santa Claus distributes sweets and balloons to children on the occasion of Christmas outside a Church in Gauhati, India, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. Though Hindus and Muslims comprise the majority of the population in India, Christmas is a national holiday celebrated with much fanfare. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

Indian Christian devotee stands beside a bonfire marking Christmas Eve outside St. Peter's Church in Allahabad on December 24, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SANJAY KANOJIA

Indian Christian devotee stands beside a bonfire marking Christmas Eve outside St. Peter’s Church in Allahabad on December 24, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SANJAY KANOJIA

Indian Christian devotees watch a fireworks display marking Christmas Eve outside St. Peter's Church in Allahabad on December 24, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SANJAY KANOJIA

Indian Christian devotees watch a fireworks display marking Christmas Eve outside St. Peter’s Church in Allahabad on December 24, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SANJAY KANOJIA

Indian Christians light candles on Christmas Day outside a church in Siliguri on December 25, 2016. Although Indian Christians make up a mere two percent of the country's billion plus population, Christmas has become a popular festival in the Indian calendar. / AFP PHOTO / DIPTENDU DUTTA

Indian Christians light candles on Christmas Day outside a church in Siliguri on December 25, 2016.
Although Indian Christians make up a mere two percent of the country’s billion plus population, Christmas has become a popular festival in the Indian calendar. / AFP PHOTO / DIPTENDU DUTTA

Indian Christians light candles on Christmas Day at a church in Amritsar on December 25, 2016. Despite Christians forming a little over two percent of the billion plus population in India, with Hindus comprising the majority, Christmas is celebrated with fanfare and zeal throughout the country. / AFP PHOTO / NARINDER NANU

Indian Christians light candles on Christmas Day at a church in Amritsar on December 25, 2016.
Despite Christians forming a little over two percent of the billion plus population in India, with Hindus comprising the majority, Christmas is celebrated with fanfare and zeal throughout the country. / AFP PHOTO / NARINDER NANU

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians pass through a security gate before a Christmas service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / Arif ALI

Pakistani Christians pass through a security gate before a Christmas service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / Arif ALI

APTOPIX Mideast Iraq Christmas Mass

Priests lead a Christmas Eve’s Mass in the Assyrian Orthodox church of Mart Shmoni, in Bartella, Iraq, Saturday, December 24, 2016. For the 300 Christians who braved rain and wind to attend the mass in their hometown, the ceremony provided them with as much holiday cheer as grim reminders of the war still raging on around their northern Iraqi town and the distant prospect of moving back home. Displaced when the Islamic State seized their town in 2014, they were bused into the town from Irbil, capital of the self-ruled Kurdish region, where they have lived for more than two years. AP Photo

US Soldiers attend a Christmas Eve service for Iraqi Christians at the Saint John's church (Mar Yohanna church) in the town of Qaraqosh (also known as Hamdaniya), 30 kms east of Mosul, on December 25, 2016.  / AFP PHOTO / SAFIN HAMED

US Soldiers attend a Christmas Eve service for Iraqi Christians at the Saint John’s church (Mar Yohanna church) in the town of Qaraqosh (also known as Hamdaniya), 30 kms east of Mosul, on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SAFIN HAMED

An Iraqi odontology student dressed in a Santa Claus outfit distribute gifts to impoverished children outside their shanty home in the Iraqi holy Shiite city of Najaf on December 25, 2016 / AFP PHOTO / Haidar HAMDANI

An Iraqi odontology student dressed in a Santa Claus outfit distribute gifts to impoverished children outside their shanty home in the Iraqi holy Shiite city of Najaf on December 25, 2016 / AFP PHOTO / Haidar HAMDANI

An Iraqi odontology student dressed in a Santa Claus outfit distribute gifts to impoverished children outside their shanty home in the Iraqi holy Shiite city of Najaf on December 25, 2016 / AFP PHOTO / Haidar HAMDANI

An Iraqi odontology student dressed in a Santa Claus outfit distribute gifts to impoverished children outside their shanty home in the Iraqi holy Shiite city of Najaf on December 25, 2016 / AFP PHOTO / Haidar HAMDANI

An Iraqi Christian boy holds a candle as he attends a Christmas Eve service at the Saint John's church (Mar Yohanna church) in the town of Qaraqosh (also known as Hamdaniya), 30 kms east of Mosul, on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SAFIN HAMED

An Iraqi Christian boy holds a candle as he attends a Christmas Eve service at the Saint John’s church (Mar Yohanna church) in the town of Qaraqosh (also known as Hamdaniya), 30 kms east of Mosul, on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SAFIN HAMED

People wearing fancy dress clothes prepare to jump into the Mediterranean sea as they take part in the Copa Nadal in the Spanish port of Barcelona, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. The Copa Nadal (Christmas Cup) is a traditional swimming competition that takes place in Barcelona every December 25th, where participants swim 200 meters in the open sea in the port of Barcelona. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

People wearing fancy dress clothes prepare to jump into the Mediterranean sea as they take part in the Copa Nadal in the Spanish port of Barcelona, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. The Copa Nadal (Christmas Cup) is a traditional swimming competition that takes place in Barcelona every December 25th, where participants swim 200 meters in the open sea in the port of Barcelona. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Members of the volunteer Water Skiing Christmas Show, including a water skiing Santa Claus with elves, reindeer, the Grinch, and others, water ski  December 24, 2016, on the Potomac River, in Alexandria, Virginia, just down the river from Washington, DC. / AFP PHOTO / PAUL J. RICHARDS

Members of the volunteer Water Skiing Christmas Show, including a water skiing Santa Claus with elves, reindeer, the Grinch, and others, water ski December 24, 2016, on the Potomac River, in Alexandria, Virginia, just down the river from Washington, DC. / AFP PHOTO / PAUL J. RICHARDS

People take part in the traditional Christmas Swim in Monaco on December 24, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / YANN COATSALIOU

People take part in the traditional Christmas Swim in Monaco on December 24, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / YANN COATSALIOU

A visitor poses for a photo next to a Christmas tree on Bondi Beach to mark Christmas Day in Sydney on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / PETER PARKS

A visitor poses for a photo next to a Christmas tree on Bondi Beach to mark Christmas Day in Sydney on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / PETER PARKS

Members of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club with Father Christmas outfits pose for a picture during their traditional Christmas swimming on December 25, 2016 at the Orankesee lake in Berlin. / AFP PHOTO / Tobias SCHWARZ

Members of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club with Father Christmas outfits pose for a picture during their traditional Christmas swimming on December 25, 2016 at the Orankesee lake in Berlin. / AFP PHOTO / Tobias SCHWARZ

Members of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club wear Father Christmas outfits during their traditional Christmas swimming on December 25, 2016 at the Orankesee lake in Berlin. / AFP PHOTO / Tobias SCHWARZ

Members of the Berliner Seehunde (Berlin seals) swimming club wear Father Christmas outfits during their traditional Christmas swimming on December 25, 2016 at the Orankesee lake in Berlin. / AFP PHOTO / Tobias SCHWARZ

Participants sporting Santa Claus regalia jump into the water during the 107th edition of the Copa Nadal (Christmas Cup) in Barcelona's Port Vell on December 25, 2016.   The traditional 200-meter Christmas swimming race gathered more than 300 participants on Barcelona's old harbour.  / AFP PHOTO / JOSEP LAGO

Participants sporting Santa Claus regalia jump into the water during the 107th edition of the Copa Nadal (Christmas Cup) in Barcelona’s Port Vell on December 25, 2016.
The traditional 200-meter Christmas swimming race gathered more than 300 participants on Barcelona’s old harbour. / AFP PHOTO / JOSEP LAGO

Participants jump into the water during the 107th edition of the Copa Nadal (Christmas Cup) in Barcelona's Port Vell on December 25, 2016.   The traditional 200-meter Christmas swimming race gathered more than 300 participants on Barcelona's old harbour.  / AFP PHOTO / JOSEP LAGO

Participants jump into the water during the 107th edition of the Copa Nadal (Christmas Cup) in Barcelona’s Port Vell on December 25, 2016.
The traditional 200-meter Christmas swimming race gathered more than 300 participants on Barcelona’s old harbour. / AFP PHOTO / JOSEP LAGO

Iranian Christians attend Christmas Eve mass at the St Joseph Armenian Catholic church in Tehran on December 24, 2016, as Christians around the world are celebrating Christmas. / AFP PHOTO / ATTA KENARE

Iranian Christians attend Christmas Eve mass at the St Joseph Armenian Catholic church in Tehran on December 24, 2016, as Christians around the world are celebrating Christmas. / AFP PHOTO / ATTA KENARE

Catholic christians participate at a Christmas Eve mass in Sent Antuan church, the largest church of the Roman Catholic Church in Istanbul, Saturday, Dec, 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

Catholic christians participate at a Christmas Eve mass in Sent Antuan church, the largest church of the Roman Catholic Church in Istanbul, Saturday, Dec, 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

Hundreds of lights glitter at the Botanical Garden during the "Christmas Garden Berlin" in Berlin on December 23, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / dpa / Ralf Hirschberger / Germany OUT

Hundreds of lights glitter at the Botanical Garden during the “Christmas Garden Berlin” in Berlin on December 23, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / dpa / Ralf Hirschberger / Germany OUT

A group of choir sings the holy songs during a Christmas mass in Colombo on December 25, 2016. Christians account for some six percent of Sri Lanka's 21 million people. / AFP PHOTO / Ishara S. KODIKARA

A group of choir sings the holy songs during a Christmas mass in Colombo on December 25, 2016.
Christians account for some six percent of Sri Lanka’s 21 million people. / AFP PHOTO / Ishara S. KODIKARA

Christian devotee leaves the St Lucia's Church after prays during a Christmas mass in Colombo on December 25, 2016.  Christians account for some six percent of Sri Lanka's 21 million people. / AFP PHOTO / Ishara S. KODIKARA

Christian devotee leaves the St Lucia’s Church after prays during a Christmas mass in Colombo on December 25, 2016.
Christians account for some six percent of Sri Lanka’s 21 million people. / AFP PHOTO / Ishara S. KODIKARA

Regional bishop Ralf Meister leading the Christmas Eve service at the Marktkirche, also known as Market Church of Sts. George and James, in Hannover, Germany. (Peter Steffen/dpa via AP)

Regional bishop Ralf Meister leading the Christmas Eve service at the Marktkirche, also known as Market Church of Sts. George and James, in Hannover, Germany. (Peter Steffen/dpa via AP)

Indonesian Christians attend a Christmas Eve service at a church in Surabaya, East Java province, on December 24, 2016. Indonesian police on December 22 announced plans to deploy some 155,000 personnel to secure the country during Christmas and New Year holidays, a day after police foiled plans for militant attacks. / AFP PHOTO / JUNI KRISWANTO

Indonesian Christians attend a Christmas Eve service at a church in Surabaya, East Java province, on December 24, 2016.
Indonesian police on December 22 announced plans to deploy some 155,000 personnel to secure the country during Christmas and New Year holidays, a day after police foiled plans for militant attacks. / AFP PHOTO / JUNI KRISWANTO

Indonesian Christians attend a Christmas Eve service at a church in Surabaya, East Java province, on December 24, 2016. Indonesian police on December 22 announced plans to deploy some 155,000 personnel to secure the country during Christmas and New Year holidays, a day after police foiled plans for militant attacks. / AFP PHOTO / JUNI KRISWANTO

Indonesian Christians attend a Christmas Eve service at a church in Surabaya, East Java province, on December 24, 2016.
Indonesian police on December 22 announced plans to deploy some 155,000 personnel to secure the country during Christmas and New Year holidays, a day after police foiled plans for militant attacks. / AFP PHOTO / JUNI KRISWANTO

A woman lights candle during a Christmas mass in the Patriarch's cathedral Alexander Nevski in Sofia, on December 25, 2016.  The small Balkan state, unlike some other fellow Orthodox countries, celebrates Christmas on 25 December.  / AFP PHOTO / NIKOLAY DOYCHINOV

A woman lights candle during a Christmas mass in the Patriarch’s cathedral Alexander Nevski in Sofia, on December 25, 2016.
The small Balkan state, unlike some other fellow Orthodox countries, celebrates Christmas on 25 December. / AFP PHOTO / NIKOLAY DOYCHINOV

Belarus locals dressed as Father Frost and Snow Maidens march along a street during a traditional Christmas parade in Minsk on December 24, 2016.  / AFP PHOTO / Sergei GAPON

Belarus locals dressed as Father Frost and Snow Maidens march along a street during a traditional Christmas parade in Minsk on December 24, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / Sergei GAPON

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Pakistani Christians gather during a Christmas Day Service at a church in Lahore on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ARIF ALI

Britain's Prince Charles, Prince of Wales (L) and Britain's Camilla Duchess of Cornwall (C) arrive to attend the Royal family Christmas Day church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk, eastern England, on December 25, 2016.  Queen Elizabeth II missed the Christmas Day church service attended by the British royal family as she continues to suffer from a heavy cold, Buckingham Palace said today. / AFP PHOTO / Justin TALLIS

Britain’s Prince Charles, Prince of Wales (L) and Britain’s Camilla Duchess of Cornwall (C) arrive to attend the Royal family Christmas Day church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk, eastern England, on December 25, 2016.
Queen Elizabeth II missed the Christmas Day church service attended by the British royal family as she continues to suffer from a heavy cold, Buckingham Palace said today. / AFP PHOTO / Justin TALLIS

A young Myanmar woman holds a child as she poses with Christmas light decorations in Yangon on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / YE AUNG THU

A young Myanmar woman holds a child as she poses with Christmas light decorations in Yangon on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / YE AUNG THU

Sri Lankans walk past a Christmas tree displayed in Colombo on December 25, 2016.  Sri Lanka surpassed the world record for the tallest artificial Christmas tree despite building delays forcing organisers to prune the structure by almost half, an official said. Cricket legend Arjuna Ranatunga initiated plans to build the record-breaking tree in Sri Lanka's capital Colombo, but ran into opposition from the Catholic church which said the money would be better spent on charity. / AFP PHOTO / Ishara S. KODIKARA

Sri Lankans walk past a Christmas tree displayed in Colombo on December 25, 2016.
Sri Lanka surpassed the world record for the tallest artificial Christmas tree despite building delays forcing organisers to prune the structure by almost half, an official said. Cricket legend Arjuna Ranatunga initiated plans to build the record-breaking tree in Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo, but ran into opposition from the Catholic church which said the money would be better spent on charity. / AFP PHOTO / Ishara S. KODIKARA

Sri Lankans look at an artificial Christmas tree in Colombo on December 25, 2016.  Sri Lanka surpassed the world record for the tallest artificial Christmas tree despite building delays forcing organisers to prune the structure by almost half, an official said. Cricket legend Arjuna Ranatunga initiated plans to build the record-breaking tree in Sri Lanka's capital Colombo, but ran into opposition from the Catholic church which said the money would be better spent on charity. / AFP PHOTO / Ishara S. KODIKARA

Sri Lankans look at an artificial Christmas tree in Colombo on December 25, 2016.
Sri Lanka surpassed the world record for the tallest artificial Christmas tree despite building delays forcing organisers to prune the structure by almost half, an official said. Cricket legend Arjuna Ranatunga initiated plans to build the record-breaking tree in Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo, but ran into opposition from the Catholic church which said the money would be better spent on charity. / AFP PHOTO / Ishara S. KODIKARA

Homeless people eat a free meal during a charity Christmas dinner at the San Miguel y San Sebastian church in Valencia, on December  25, 2016 / AFP PHOTO / JOSE JORDAN

Homeless people eat a free meal during a charity Christmas dinner at the San Miguel y San Sebastian church in Valencia, on December 25, 2016 / AFP PHOTO / JOSE JORDAN

In this photo released on the official Facebook page of the Syrian Presidency, Syrian President Bashar Assad, left, and his wife Asma, center, shake hands with a christian orphan during their visit to Sednaya Convent on the occasion of Christmas day, in Sednaya north of Damascus, Syria, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Syrian Presidency via Facebook)

In this photo released on the official Facebook page of the Syrian Presidency, Syrian President Bashar Assad, left, and his wife Asma, center, shake hands with a christian orphan during their visit to Sednaya Convent on the occasion of Christmas day, in Sednaya north of Damascus, Syria, Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Syrian Presidency via Facebook)

People take photos of the "Christmas and Light" show Friday, Dec. 16, 2016, at the financial district of Makati city east of Manila, Philippines. The "dancing" lights and laser show, which boasts of over a million Christmas lights, has attracted thousands of Filipinos every Yuletide season. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

People take photos of the “Christmas and Light” show Friday, Dec. 16, 2016, at the financial district of Makati city east of Manila, Philippines. The “dancing” lights and laser show, which boasts of over a million Christmas lights, has attracted thousands of Filipinos every Yuletide season. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

A woman walks past a lit Christmas display at a park in Pasay, south of Manila, Philippines on Thursday, Dec. 22, 2016. Christmas decorations adorn the streets and homes of many Filipinos as this predominantly Roman Catholic country prepare to celebrate the most important and beloved Christmas season. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

A woman walks past a lit Christmas display at a park in Pasay, south of Manila, Philippines on Thursday, Dec. 22, 2016. Christmas decorations adorn the streets and homes of many Filipinos as this predominantly Roman Catholic country prepare to celebrate the most important and beloved Christmas season. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

Locals walk past a lit Christmas display at a park in Pasay, south of Manila, Philippines on Thursday, Dec. 22, 2016. Christmas decorations adorn the streets and homes of many Filipinos as this predominantly Roman Catholic country prepare to celebrate the most important and beloved Christmas season. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

Locals walk past a lit Christmas display at a park in Pasay, south of Manila, Philippines on Thursday, Dec. 22, 2016. Christmas decorations adorn the streets and homes of many Filipinos as this predominantly Roman Catholic country prepare to celebrate the most important and beloved Christmas season. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

Workers carry a roasted pig to be sold along the street of Manila on December 24, 2016.  "Lechon", or roasted pig, is a regular fare at Philippine festivities, especially during Christmas and New Year celebrations. The Philippine Christmas season runs from December until the second week of January. / AFP PHOTO / Noel CELIS

Workers carry a roasted pig to be sold along the street of Manila on December 24, 2016.
“Lechon”, or roasted pig, is a regular fare at Philippine festivities, especially during Christmas and New Year celebrations. The Philippine Christmas season runs from December until the second week of January. / AFP PHOTO / Noel CELIS

Workers rotate bamboo-skewered pigs over hot coals in Manila on December 24, 2016.  "Lechon", or roasted pig, is a regular fare at Philippine festivities, especially during Christmas and New Year celebrations. The Philippine Christmas season runs from December until the second week of January. / AFP PHOTO / Noel CELIS

Workers rotate bamboo-skewered pigs over hot coals in Manila on December 24, 2016.
“Lechon”, or roasted pig, is a regular fare at Philippine festivities, especially during Christmas and New Year celebrations. The Philippine Christmas season runs from December until the second week of January. / AFP PHOTO / Noel CELIS

A worker removes hair from roasted pigs for sale along a street in Manila on December 24, 2016.  "Lechon", or roasted pig, is a regular fare at Philippine festivities, especially during Christmas and New Year celebrations. The Philippine Christmas season runs from December until the second week of January. / AFP PHOTO / Noel CELIS

A worker removes hair from roasted pigs for sale along a street in Manila on December 24, 2016.
“Lechon”, or roasted pig, is a regular fare at Philippine festivities, especially during Christmas and New Year celebrations. The Philippine Christmas season runs from December until the second week of January. / AFP PHOTO / Noel CELIS

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