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Monday, 14 October, 2002, 11:45 GMT 12:45 UK
Police hunt Bali blast suspects
An Indonesian Red Cross worker stands in the rubble
Many bodies have still not been identified
Indonesian officials investigating Saturday's bomb attack on the island of Bali, which killed at least 188 people, say they have the names of several suspects.

A team of American FBI agents has arrived on the island, and Australian police and intelligence agents are providing "technical assistance", a police spokesman said.

Enlarge image
Enlarge image

Aerial view of the devastation

The bomb, in the resort of Kuta, destroyed the Sari Club, a nightspot popular with foreign tourists, and many of the victims were burned beyond recognition.

Hundreds were injured and about 220 Australians remain unaccounted for. UK Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said on Monday it is now thought that 33 Britons are among the dead

While no-one has admitted carrying out the attack, the Associated Press quoted the Indonesian defence minister as saying he believed it was linked to Osama Bin Laden's al-Qaeda network.

"We are sure al-Qaeda is here," Matori Abdul Djalil said in Jakarta. "The Bali bomb blast is related to al-Qaeda with the co-operation of local terrorists."

As investigators scour the bomb site, many embassies - including the British and American - are advising people to cancel planned holidays in Indonesia.

All US nationals in the country have been told to leave - including diplomats and non-emergency government staff.

Click here for a map of the area

Despite the defence minister's statement, investigators have not revealed who their suspects are.

Analysts have suggested it could be the work of Indonesia's Jemaah Islamiyah, a group suspected of al-Qaeda links, but a cleric accused of being the group's leader denied he had had any role in the bombing.

"All the allegations against me are groundless. I challenge them to prove anything," Abu Bakar Bashir told AP by phone from Solo, in central Java, where he runs an Islamic school.


The word 'terrorism' is too antiseptic - what happened was barbaric, brutal, mass murder without justification

Australian Prime Minister John Howard

"I suspect that the bombing was engineered by the United States and its allies to justify allegations that Indonesia is a base for terrorists," he said.

Jemaah Islamiyah, which seeks to establish a pan-Islamic state in South-East Asia, has been accused of plotting bomb attacks against the US, British and Australian embassies in Singapore last year, and Indonesia has ignored calls from the US and other countries to arrest Mr Bashir.

Australian Prime Minister John Howard called on Indonesia to do more to fight terrorism within its borders, saying it had been a problem for a long time.

Injured Australians, many with severe burns, were evacuated overnight on government Hercules planes or special commercial flights, with more heading home on Monday.

At least one of the injured victims died on the way.

Day of mourning

Speaking in the Australian parliament on Monday, Mr Howard expressed his outrage at the attack.


Glass was flying everywhere and people were screaming and running in all directions
Daniel Tyler, England

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"In many respects, Mr Speaker, the word 'terrorism' is too antiseptic an expression to describe what happened. It's too technical, it's too formal. What happened was barbaric, brutal, mass murder without justification," he said.

Mr Howard suspended the afternoon sitting of parliament and declared next Sunday a national day of mourning.

The Australian Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer, and Justice Minister, Chris Ellison, are flying to Bali on Monday before continuing to Jakarta for talks with security authorities on finding those responsible.

Australia's Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs Christine Gallus told the BBC it was not possible to say for sure that the attack had deliberately targeted Australians.

Women in Denpasar check the names of people listed as missing
The names of the missing - mostly foreign tourists - have been posted

Many Balinese, as well as Europeans, Americans, New Zealanders and Singaporeans are also among the dead and injured.

World leaders, including US President George W Bush, have condemned the attack, and Australia's prime minister said he would not let the bombing go unpunished.

"It is not an occasion for hot-headed responses, but certainly not an occasion to imagine that if you roll yourself up into a little ball all these horrible things will go away," Mr Howard said.

Two days after the attack, it was still unclear how many Australians had died. Officials in Bali said 15 deaths had been confirmed, but that death toll was expected to rise as more remains were identified.

Lists of missing people have been posted in Bali and officials warn it could take days to identify all the victims, some of whom were trapped in the Sari club by a wall of flames.

Helpline numbers
Office of US Citizens' Services: 202 647 5225/5226
UK Foreign Office: 020 7008 0000
Australian Foreign Affairs Department: 1-800 002 214 or 02 6261 3305
New Zealand Foreign Ministry: 0800 432 111

A notice board at the hospital in Bali includes a section called "Identity Unknown" and lists details on victims such as:

"Young girl in intensive care, 11-14 years old, face burned, in coma. Caucasian," or "Girl in intensive care, about 5 years old, 130 cm, fair skin, Caucasian with reddish brown hair. She has a purplish belly button ring."

Tourists at the blast scene said there were two explosions around the nightclub.

A first small homemade device is said to have exploded outside Paddy's Bar, some 30 metres away, just seconds before a huge car bomb hit the Sari Club.



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 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Judith Moloney
"Western embassies are advising foreign tourists to cancel any plans to go to Indonesia"
UK Foreign Secretary Jack Straw
"A total of 18 British deaths with another 15 missing"
The BBC's Michael Peschardt reports from Australia
"There is a deep sense of anger and outrage"

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14 Oct 02 | Asia-Pacific
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