National mourning in South Korea after the deadly stampede in Seoul

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National mourning in South Korea after the deadly stampede in Seoul

South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol addresses the nation after Saturday's deadly stampede.

President Yoon Suk -yeol declared a period of national mourning in South Korea on Sunday in the aftermath of a stampede that killed 153 people Saturday night in a bustling Seoul neighborhood during Halloween holiday celebrations.

Yoon Suk-yeol offered his condolences to the families of the victims and wished a speedy recovery to the injured, 82 of whom were injured, 19 of them serious, according to a latest report provided by the firefighters. This is a real tragedy, the South Korean head of state said in a statement.

“A tragedy, a disaster that shouldn't have happened happened in the heart of Seoul last night.

— Yoon Suk-yeol, President of South Korea

The stampede occurred in an alleyway in the popular Itaewon district of Korean youth and expatriates for its nightlife. Twenty-six foreign nationals from 15 countries are among those killed, the South Korean Foreign Ministry said.

At least four Chinese nationals as well as four Russian nationals lost their lives, reported the respective embassies of the two countries.

The personal effects of the victims

The Quai d'Orsay has confirmed the death of a French national. Japan has announced the death of two nationals.

Many of the victims of the disaster, including many women in their twenties, were near a nightclub, said Choi Sung-beom, chief of the fire station of the city. Yongsan district.

By midday on Sunday, at least 90% of the victims had been identified, the Interior Ministry said. A huge crowd in an alley in Seoul celebrated Halloween for the first time since the lifting of health restrictions imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Emergency services treat injured after stampede in Seoul.

Witnesses said they were struck by the extremely large number of people in the narrow alleys and dozens of bars and restaurants in the Itaewon district on Saturday night, ten times more than usual, according to the one of them.

The masked, disguised crowd became more and more agitated as the evening progressed, as the police had difficulty bringing them under control on several occasions, before the deadly stampede that ensued. x27; was produced around 10:20 p.m.

According to firefighters and witnesses, many people poured into an already crowded steep and narrow lane when some at the top of the lane fell, dragging others down and collapsing on top of each other. the others.

Ambulances arrive at the scene where dozens of people suffered cardiac arrest in Seoul's working-class Itaewon district.

Images posted to social media showed hundreds of people huddled in the alley, trapped and motionless as rescuers and police were trying to extricate them.

The disaster is one of the deadliest stampedes ever to occur anywhere in the world and one of the worst civilian disasters in South Korea's history. South, after the sinking of the Sewol ferry which claimed the lives of 304 people in 2014, including many high school students.

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