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Thursday, January 22, 2015, 09:15

11 officials punished for fatal Shanghai stampede

By Su Zhou
11 officials punished for fatal Shanghai stampede
A woman walks down the steps next to Chinese paramilitary police officers at the site of the New Year's Eve stampede in Shanghai on January 3, 2015.(AFP PHOTO / WANG ZHAO)

Four top officials have been removed from their posts and seven others also disciplined by the Shanghai municipal government over the New Year's Eve stampede that killed 36 people and injured 49 others.

Huangpu district's Communist Party secretary, government chief, police chief and deputy police chief were removed and seven other officials from that district and the Shanghai Municipal Bureau were demoted or disciplined.

On Wednesday, the Shanghai government announced the results of an investigation into the tragedy.

It found that on the night of the disaster, some of the officials involved attended a lavish banquet at the public's expense, "hampering the response, violating Party rules and adding to public discontent".

The report blames Huangpu district officials for insufficient precautions, poor site management and congestion at the scene of the stampede in the city's riverfront Bund area and for insufficient notification of a show being canceled.

"The show in the Bund area was canceled, but it was not until Dec 30 that the Huangpu Tourism Bureau posted the information officially," said Xiong Xinguang, head of the Shanghai Emergency Management Office.

The stampede happened on a set of concrete steps about a half-hour before midnight. Three dozen people, including a 12-year-old boy, were trampled and asphyxiated.

Each victim's family will receive 800,000 yuan (about $130,000) in compensation.

AP and Xinhua contributed to this story.


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