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Over 150 dead after Halloween stampede in South Korea

At least 151 people were killed and 82 injured in a crowd stampede in the South Korean capital Seoul on Saturday night during Halloween celebrations, the local fire department has said.

  • The incident occurred in a narrow alley near the Hamilton Hotel in the Itaewon District, the most international area of the city, close to the Yongsan Garrison US military base.
  • According to the Korea Herald, around 100,000 people flocked to the area throughout the day to celebrate the first Halloween weekend without the mask mandate and social distancing measures that were in place during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • It is not clear exactly what caused the stampede. Eyewitnesses said the area had become so crowded that rescuers could not immediately get to the victims and attempt resuscitation.

According to local media, at least 19 of those killed were foreigners, including citizens of Iran, Uzbekistan, China and Norway. Moscow’s embassy in Seoul confirmed the deaths of two Russian citizens.

The majority of the victims were in their late teens and 20s, according to Yonhap news agency. Dozens of the injured were sent to hospitals in the capital, with at least 19 seriously injured.

President Yoon Suk-yeol chaired an emergency response meeting shortly after the tragedy.

  • “The top priority is transporting and rescuing the patients and providing prompt medical treatment for the affected people,” he said, according to a spokesperson.
  • Seoul Mayor Oh Se-hoon has cut short his trip to Europe and decided to return to the city, officials said.

Source: RT


The South Korean president has declared a week of nationwide mourning after a deadly stampede during Halloween celebrations in Seoul on Saturday night claimed the lives of over 150 people, including at least 19 foreigners from multiple states.

  • At least four citizens of Russia, all females, were killed in the crowd crush, Moscow’s embassy in Seoul confirmed on Sunday.

China also said that three of its nationals lost their lives in the tragedy.

  • The Chinese embassy said it had “activated an emergency response mechanism” to provide assistance to any Chinese nationals who were injured or might be seeking help.

The US embassy in Seoul told CNN that at least two US nationals were among the victims. Some Americans were also apparently injured as the embassy said it was “working closely with local authorities and other partner organizations to assist US citizens affected.”

Seoul authorities also identified several victims from Iran, Uzbekistan and Norway.

  • According to South Korea’s Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters, foreign nationals from ten countries were killed in the stampede.
  • As of midday on Sunday, the death toll stood at 153 with another 133 injured. Most of the victims were in their late teens or 20s. The number of fatalities could rise further as 37 people sustained serious injuries in the stampede, officials warned.

“It’s truly horrific,” President Yoon Suk-yeol said on Sunday, calling the stampede a “tragedy and disaster that should never have happened.”

The tragedy unfolded in Seoul’s main nightlife district on Saturday, as up to 100,000 people converged on the area for late-night Halloween celebrations. According to eyewitnesses, the stampede happened after the crowd pushed itself into a narrow side alley, but authorities have yet to establish the exact sequence of events.

  • President Yoon promised that authorities will “investigate the cause of the accident and make fundamental improvements so that similar accidents do not happen again in the future.”

Source: RT