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30 Oct, 2022 04:36

Number of foreigners reported dead in Seoul stampede continues to rise

Citizens of Russia, China, Iran, Uzbekistan and Norway are reportedly among the dead after a crush in South Korea
Number of foreigners reported dead in Seoul stampede continues to rise

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.”

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