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South Korean Interior Minister Lee Sang-min apologized for last weekend’s Halloween drama. “As the minister overseeing public safety, I sincerely apologize for the incident,” he told me. He added that the government had “unlimited responsibility for the security of our people.”
Earlier today, South Korea’s police chief Yoon Hee-kyun said he felt “grave responsibility” for failing to prevent the disaster. According to him, early emergency calls were not handled well by the police. “The police will do everything in their power to prevent a tragedy like this from happening again,” Yoon said.
Especially young women
Yun said the initial investigation revealed that police received numerous calls from citizens to inform authorities of the potential danger posed by a crowd gathered in Itaewon. The agents who received these calls did not respond satisfactorily.
At least 156 people were killed in the disaster. 151 people were injured, 29 of whom are in critical condition. Most of the dead were young women. According to figures released today, 101 women in their twenties are participating.
Most of the victims were in an alley next to the Hamilton Hotel in the heart of Itaewon’s entertainment district.
Saturday stampede pictures:
Big Crowds Celebrating Halloween in Seoul
South Korean Prime Minister Han Duk-soo identified the lack of “institutional support” for crowd control measures as one of the causes of the disaster. Han said the ongoing investigation is also examining whether the institutions involved on the ground have responded adequately.
Crowd management expert Sian Young talks about what went wrong in Seoul:
Managing crowds of experts about the drama in Seoul and what went wrong
President Yoon Seok Yeol also said that South Korea lacks knowledge Crowd ManagementThe Associated Press reported. At a cabinet meeting, he called for the use of drones and other high-tech devices. He said that the government would soon hold a meeting with experts to review public national safety rules.
The drama in Seoul is the deadliest disaster in South Korea since the sinking of a ferry in 2014 that killed 304 people. There were also lax safety rules.
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