With funerals and memorial services underway, flowers and candles are flooding the streets of Seoul while Halloween decorations are being taken down after street celebrations turned into what is considered a deadly crowd-crush. 

Police Chief Yoon Hee-keun said in a statement today that the incident could have been avoided and apologized for the “inadequate” response. The 137 officers present were equipped to handle traffic and crime, and were therefore unable to control and defuse the madness which sparked in the estimated 100,00-people crowd celebrating Halloween in the nightlife district of Itaewon. The lack of emergency response has brought criticism suggesting that preventative measures were neglected, which would have saved lives. 

Seoul and the rest of the country is mourning – South Korea’s prime minister Han Duck-soo has stated that psychological support will be provided for those affected by the traumatic events. IMAGO’s Picture Desk is covering the events that have followed, along with impressions from the streets of Seoul in the aftermath and on the night of the incident. 

See our curated collection, stay up to date with our Picture Desk coverage.

IMAGO/NurPhoto
IMAGO / NurPhoto / Chris Jung | Police block the scene of the incident in Itaewon. 31 October, 2022.
IMAGO/AFLO
IMAGO / AFLO | Photos of visitors are seen on the window of an instant photo studio next to an alley in Itaewon district in Seoul, South Korea. 30 October, 2022.
IMAGO/Penta Press
IMAGO / Penta Press / Jimmy Han | Citizens left flowers in front of the crushed accident site in Itaewon, Seoul, South Korea on October 30, 2022.
IMAGO/Penta Press
IMAGO / Penta Press / Jimmy Han | People pay tribute to victims of the Itaewon stampede accident in memorial altar, Seoul, South Korea on 0ctober 31, 2022.
IMAGO/NurPhoto
IMAGO / NurPhoto / Chris Jung | Halloween Disaster In Seoul A mourner visits the site of the incident and pays tribute to the site of the Itaewon disasters, Yongsan, Seoul, South Korea. 31 October, 2022.
IMAGO/Xinhua
IMAGO / Xinhua | Rescuers work at the site of a stampede accident in Itaewon, a district of Seoul, South Korea, Oct. 30, 2022.
IMAGO/AFLO
IMAGO / AFLO | A narrow downhill alley in Itaewon district in Seoul, South Korea, next to the alley where a stampede during Halloween parties killed people. 30 October, 2022.
IMAGO / NurPhoto | Halloween Disaster In Seoul South Korea s Prime Minister Han Duck-soo arrive at memorial
IMAGO / NurPhoto / Chris Jung | Prime Minister Han Duck-soo arrives at the memorial altar for the victims of the Halloween disasters in Itaewon on October 31, 2022 in Seoul, South Korea.
IMAGO/AFLO
IMAGO / AFLO | A narrow downhill alley in Itaewon district in Seoul, South Korea, next to the alley where a stampede during Halloween parties killed people. 30 October, 2022.
IMAGO/AFLO
IMAGO / AFLO | Policemen stand guard at an alley in Itaewon district in Seoul, South Korea, where a stampede during Halloween parties killed people. 30 October, 2022.
IMAGO/Penta Press
IMAGO / Penta Press / Jimmy Han | Paramedics rescue people suffering from cardiac arrest in Seoul, South Korea on October 30, 2022.
IMAGO/Penta Press
IMAGO / Penta Press / Seokyong Lee | A pedestrian walks past an alleyway near the stampede accident site. 30 October, 2022.
 Article and image selections by Sofia Bergmann.