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Sunday, 13 October, 2002, 17:32 GMT 18:32 UK
Disbelief at devastation
Victims of blast
Some 75% of the dead were foreigners

We'd been told we wouldn't be able to get anywhere near the site of the explosion if we travelled by car. The roads had been sealed off and there were traffic jams everywhere.

But we had to try, we couldn't walk with our heavy broadcasting equipment.

So we cut through the narrow streets of Kuta trying to reach the area where so many of the town's liveliest restaurants, shops and bars are located.

At first everything seemed strangely normal.

Site of the blast
There is now silence in the area where the club stood
There were plenty of foreign tourists wandering around in their swimming costumes or sitting at outdoor cafes having lunch.

But then we began to see the first signs of destruction.

As we drove along the small street leading to the Sari nightclub, more and more of the shops had lost their windows, blown out by the force of the blast.

Shattered glass was strewn across the road.

Finally a road block and angry men telling us we couldn't take the car any further.

We had no choice now but to start walking.

A large crowd of Balinese people were pressed up against a police cordon. We were let through and expected immediately to be at the location of the explosion.

Police cordon

But it was still a good half kilometre away. This had clearly been a massive bomb.

Through another police cordon and a crowd of onlookers including a group of tourists and we were finally there.

The scale of the destruction was hard to take in.

The Sari nightclub which had taken the brunt of the blast was no longer there.

Instead there was a gaping hole in the street.

Piles of rubble, scorched and twisted metal, and charred wood were all that remained.

A large crater in the road, now filled with water, marked the spot where the bomb had detonated on Saturday night.

Shops gutted

Next to it the chassis of a car, twisted and bent into an extraordinary shape - presumably the remnants of the vehicle which had carried the bomb.

Search for clues
The search for clues starts
It took a real leap of imagination to picture the scene on Saturday before the explosion - that this silence around us was once buzzing with young holidaymakers enjoying a Saturday night on the town.

The whole street would have been alive with hundreds of revellers from many countries around the world going from bar to bar and then to the clubs.

This was not a place for those in search of tranquillity. It was less difficult to understand why so many people had been killed or injured here.

Almost all the shops, bars and restaurants next to the Sari club had been gutted both by the force of the blast and the fire which followed.

What had been left standing looked as if it could collapse at any moment.

A team of police investigators sifted through the rubble throughout much of the day in search of forensic evidence as well as body parts.

In one small pile of earth by the road they found a man's fingers.

Sombre mood

Many people have come to search for their friends and loved ones - tourists and locals united in their desperation.

Among them, one British woman who felt the need to visit the site where her boyfriend lost his life. Another woman arrives in search of her husband.

It is pretty certain from what we can see that no-one will be found in the area now. All who were injured and those who died have already been taken to the local hospitals.

As I leave the scene, many locals and visitors are taking part in a Hindu ceremony.

Prayers are being said, candles are being lit, the mood is sombre, the disbelief etched on every face in the crowd.


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