More than 100 dead, dozens injured in horrific Seoul Halloween tragedy

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By Aminu Kutama

At least 100 people were killed and 150 more were injured after being crushed by a large crowd pushing forward on a narrow street during Halloween festivities in the capital of Seoul, South Korean officials said.

Choi Seong-beom, chief of Seoul’s Yongsan fire department, said the death toll could rise as emergency workers were continuing to transport the injured to hospitals across Seoul following the stampede in the leisure district of Itaewon on Saturday night. He said 13 of the dead have been sent to hospitals while the bodies of the remaining tens were still on the streets.

Officials say it was believed that people were crushed to death after a large crowd began pushing forward in a narrow alley near Hamilton Hotel, a major party spot in Seoul.

The National Fire Agency separately said in a statement that officials were still trying to determine the exact number of emergency patients.

TV footage and photos from the scene showed ambulance vehicles lined up in streets amid a heavy police presence and emergency workers moving the injured in stretchers. Emergency workers and pedestrians were also seen performing CPR on people lying in the streets.

A local police officer said he was also informed that a stampede occurred on Itaewon’s streets where a crowd of people gathered for Halloween festivities. The officer, who requested anonymity, saying the details of the incident was still under investigation.

However, local media reports earlier said the crush happened after a large number of people rushed to an Itaewon bar after hearing an unidentified celebrity visited the place.

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