Ruling, opposition parties to hold emergency meetings over Itaewon stampede

The ruling and opposition parties are set to hold emergency meetings on Sunday to discuss a deadly stampede at Seoul’s Itaewon district that killed at least 149 people during Halloween celebrations.

The ruling People Power Party (PPP) said it has canceled scheduled meetings and will instead convene a meeting at the National Assembly to discuss emergency response plans.

“It is an unprecedented, massive safety accident,” PPP chief Chung Jin-suk wrote on Facebook.

“We need to closely look into the cause of the accident.”

The main opposition Democratic Party (DP) said its leadership will gather for an emergency meeting to look into the cause of the deadly tragedy and come up with response plans, Yonhap news agency reported.

DP leader Lee Jae-myung said he was “shocked and devastated” and vowed to make efforts to handle the aftermath of the accident.

“We have to focus on promptly identifying victims and supporting their bereaved families as well as healing and recovery of injured people,” Lee wrote on Facebook.

“(The party) should also provide maximum support for police, fire authorities and medical staff.”

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