59 killed, 150 injured in stampede at Halloween parties in Seoul (Ld)

Fifty-nine people were killed and 150 others were injured in a deadly stampede in Seoul’s Itaewon district, as huge crowds of people stampeded at Halloween parties, according to fire authorities.

A total of 46 people were confirmed dead at the scene, and the remaining 13 were pronounced dead after they were sent to hospitals, officials said, Yonhap news agency reported.

Choi Seong-beom, head of the fire department in Yongsan, which includes Itaewon, told reporters there were a large number of casualties during Halloween festivities.

The stampede took place near the Hamilton Hotel in the nightlife district of Itaewon, as a large number of people were believed to have entered a narrow alley near the hotel.

President Yoon Suk-yeol, who presided over an emergency meeting on the stampede, ordered officials to swiftly administer first aid and treat the injured, the presidential office said.

Yoon also ordered officials to deploy emergency medical officials to Itaewon and secure emergency beds.

Separately, Prime Minister Han Duck-soo instructed the officials to make utmost efforts to minimise damages.

Meanwhile, Seoul Mayor Oh Se-hoon, who is on a visit to Europe, decided to return home in the wake of the accident, city officials said.

A total of 142 firefighting vehicles were mobilised for the area.




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