🌏 Halloween Stampede Kills At Least 153 People In South Korea, New Zealand's Parliament Is Now Majority Women And More

All the world news you need to know this week.

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  • 🙌 Good News For Your Week

At least 153 people have been killed and 150 others injured after a stampede broke out during Halloween festivities in Seoul, South Korea.

The crowd crush happened in the narrow alleys of Itaewon, Seoul’s nightlife district, on the evening of Saturday Oct. 29, when as many as 100,000 people had been out to celebrate Halloween, according to local media estimates.

Kim Seo-jeong, a 17-year-old woman who survived the crush, told the New York Times that the alley was very crowded when she and her friend entered and they struggled to move.

“There were people pushing from behind us. There were people in front of us pushing down the hill to go in the other direction,” she said.

“A person in front of me slipped and fell, pushing me down as well. People behind me fell like dominoes,” she said. “There were people beneath me and people falling on top of me. I could hardly breathe. We shouted and screamed for help, but the music was so loud in the alley our shouts were drowned.”

“People kept pushing down into a downhill club alley, resulting in other people screaming and falling down like dominos. I thought I would be crushed to death too as people kept pushing without realising there were people falling down at the start of the stampede,” a witness tweeted, according to the Guardian.

Most of the people who died were teenagers or in their 20s, authorities said. 97 were women and 54 men.

The accident is one of the deadliest peacetime accidents in South Korea’s recent history, and the death toll is expected to rise as about 20 of the injured are in serious condition.

President Yoon Suk-yeol has declared a state of official national mourning.

He promised a thorough investigation into the cause of the tragedy and improvements to ensure similar accidents don’t happen again in the future.

Also Happening Around The World

🇧🇷 People in Brazil have voted out its far-right president Jair Bolsonaro and elected former leftist president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, known as Lula, as its new leader.

🇬🇧 Former UK finance minister Rishi Sunak has become the country’s next prime minister and the first person of color to lead the UK.

🇳🇬 Nigeria is experiencing its worst flooding in a decade, with at least 600 people dead and more than 1.3 million people displaced, according to authorities.

🇦🇺 Australia’s national soccer team, the Socceroos, has issued a powerful video statement standing up for the rights of migrant workers and LGBTQ people in Qatar ahead of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Doha in November.

For the first time in the country’s history, New Zealand’s parliament now has more women than men.

It comes after Māori woman politician Soraya Peke-Mason was sworn in as a lawmaker for the Labour Party on Tuesday Oct. 25, replacing outgoing speaker Trevor Mallard.

As there is a vacancy in one spot in the 120-seat parliament, there are now 60 women MPs and 59 male MPs.

In her speech after being sworn in, Peke-Mason called it “a significant historic day for Aotearoa New Zealand.”

“There are many firsts today, Mr. Speaker, first in my swearing in, secondly at the same time, we reached for the very first time in the government, gender equity,” Peke-Mason said in her speech after being sworn in.

New Zealand has now become the sixth country in the world to achieve gender equity in its parliament, following Rwanda, Cuba, Nicaragua, Mexico and the United Arab Emirates, according to UN Women and the Inter-Parliamentary Union.

“It is a significant moment in the democratic representation of New Zealand,” deputy prime minister Grant Robertson said. “At a time when we have a female prime minister, governor general and chief justice, it is further evidence of the strides that we’re making in gender equality.”

New Zealand has a long history in leading the world in gender equality, becoming the first country worldwide to give women the right to vote in 1893.

More Women You Should Know About

🇫🇮 Finland’s parliament has approved a reform to the country’s abortion law that would make it easier for people to get the procedure.

A Philippine professor asked her students to make “anti-cheating” hats for an exam and they truly delivered.

Two days before an exam, Mary Joy Mandane-Ortiz, a mechanical engineering professor at Bicol University College of Engineering, was scrolling Facebook and saw some photos of “anti-cheating hats” that stopped students from looking at other people’s work, so she decided to ask her student to do the same, she told Almost.

She asked her students to make a “simple” design out of paper, and they accepted the task without any complaints, she said.

On the day of the mid-term exam on the third week of October, the students turned up wearing all sorts of funny and creative contraptions on their heads. They truly went above and beyond.

Mandane-Ortiz said she did not expect her students to put too much effort on making the hats because she knew they would be busy studying for the exam.

She loved the hats so much that she decided to share some photos on Facebook, where her post quickly went viral and was picked up by local and international media.

And the hats turned out to be super effective, she said.

“[The students] finished the test faster and they studied harder because there was an extra challenge,” she said, adding that the hats relieved the stress and pressure from the exams too because they were so funny.”

“When they saw the hats of their classmates, we were just laughing. There is no stressful atmosphere. It was helpful in their mental health as well,” she said.

Mandane-Ortiz said she and the students never expected the idea and post to go viral but was happy to be providing “good vibes” for people online.

“Our students are really happy about their achievements. Because they were appreciated,” she added.

More Good News For Your Week

🇲🇽 Same-sex marriage is now legal across all of Mexico’s 32 states after the northeastern Mexican state of Tamaulipas voted in favor of marriage equality.

🇨🇱 Chile has issued its first gender-neutral ID to Shane Cienfuegos, a 29-year-old nonbinary transgender activist and writer.

🇧🇷 Decked out in a police officer uniform, a rescue dog from a Brazilian police unit has become one of Rio’s most beloved police corporals for his lovable smile and dedication to the citizens.

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