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Last Updated: Tuesday, 12 October, 2004, 10:00 GMT 11:00 UK
Bali bombing victims remembered
Two people hug near the new memorial, 12 Oct 2004
The emotional wounds are still deep two years on from the bombing
Mourners in Indonesia, Australia and around the world have been remembering those who died in the Bali nightclub bombings exactly two years ago.

Relatives of victims laid wreaths at a newly-completed monument at the site of the blasts.

A total of 202 people were killed when two bombs tore through Bali's tourist district on 12 October 2002.

Eighty-eight Australians died in the attacks, and commemorative services have also been held across Australia.

In a special service in Bali on Tuesday, survivors and relatives of victims - wearing beach shorts and black armbands - offered prayers and sang songs in memory of those who died.

Two years ago, terrorism touched Australia in a way that it never has before, and we hope never again in the future
Australian Prime Minister John Howard

"The events of that day have become part of our own lives, they represent a loss of innocence, a tragedy for all of those who value peace, beauty and what is right," Australia's ambassador to Indonesia, David Ritchie, told the ceremony.

Natalie Juniardi, an Australian who lost her Indonesian husband in the attacks, admitted the commemoration event brought back difficult memories for her.

"On ceremonies and events like this, it is hard. It is hard every day, but life goes on with my two children," she said.

Mitch Ryan, another Australian who was injured in the blasts, said: "It doesn't get any easier, it is still a real emotional time, but I have got great friends and family and everyone looks after each other."

A new memorial, located close to the spot where the first bomb exploded, has been engraved with the names of all the victims and surrounded by the flags of all the countries which lost citizens.

Those who died were from 22 countries around the world, but Australia was by far the hardest hit.

In his first public engagement since winning a fourth term in elections over the weekend, Australian Prime Minister John Howard attended a memorial ceremony in Canberra.

Bali bomb site, October 2002
202 people died in the blasts on 12 October 2002
"It's a day to remember that two years ago terrorism touched Australia in a way that it never has before, and we hope never again in the future," Mr Howard said.

He also said it was a day to "re-dedicate ourselves in co-operation with our friends in the region and around the world to the fight against terrorism."

"It will be a long fight and there is no alternative but to pursue it, because terrorists do not respect weakness. They take advantage of retreat, they punish vacillation, they only respect strength and resolution," he said.

Death sentences

Late in the evening on 12 October 2002, as Indonesians and foreign tourists thronged Bali's Kuta tourist strip, two bombs exploded in quick succession.

One hit Paddy's Irish Bar, and the second exploded in a van outside the nearby Sari club.

The attack has been blamed on the South East Asian militant group Jemaah Islamiah, and many of the key figures involved have now been caught and sentenced. Some have been sentenced to death.

Several of the Bali bombers told prosecutors that they were targeting Westerners to avenge the US administration's support for Israel and the attacks on Muslims in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Since the Bali bombing, there have been a series of other attacks in Indonesia, including an explosion at a hotel in Jakarta in August 2003, which left 12 people dead.

Just last month, another suicide bombing outside the Australian Embassy in Jakarta killed nine people.

Relatives gather at the nightclub bomb site


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