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Last Updated: Thursday, 12 October 2006, 16:39 GMT 17:39 UK
Reflection and grief at Bali memorial
By Sandra Westbrooke
BBC News

Wilson Young, son of Bali victim Jake Young
Wilson Young of Kansas City recalls his father Jake, one of 202 victims

An unaccustomed silence descended on St James's Park in central London at lunchtime as the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall unveiled a memorial in honour of all those who died in the Bali bombings four years ago.

The two explosions which tore through a nightclub and a bar in the tourist area of Kuta on the Indonesian island killed 202 people, including 28 Britons.

Many others were severely injured and deeply traumatised.

Some 600 grieving friends and relatives stood in brilliant sunshine, heads bowed, to pay tribute to their loved ones at the ceremony, which was led by the Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell.

She said the families had been "plunged into a struggle they could never have imagined".

"It was an attack on a far-off place that brought grief and horror back home," she said.

It's very important to write all their names on the memorial so they can be remembered as the much-loved individuals
Susanna Miller

"Grief and horror to all of you who are gathered here today and also of course to so many others all around the world.

"So we've come here today to remember what happened and to dedicate this memorial which will stand forever as a testament."

Peace plea

The 300,000 memorial features a 5ft high marble globe engraved with 202 doves.

It stands in front of a granite wall which lists all those who died.

Families and friends of victims
Some 600 friends and relatives attended the ceremony

Each bird is different, representing a life lost.

Described as a "plea for peace and understanding", it was commissioned by the UK Bali Bombings Victims' Group, and is the work of artist Gary Breeze and sculptor Martin Cook.

Those who lost their lives were predominantly young, and came from 21 countries.

At the ceremony, their names were read out by representatives of their nations. Australia was the worst affected, with 88 killed.

Wreath laying

Susanna Miller, from the UK victims' group, lost her brother Dan in the attacks.

She says the memorial means a lot to the families.

Prince Charles
Prince Charles laid a floral wreath at the memorial

"So often the 202 victims are just a number - it's very important to write all their names on the memorial so they can be remembered as the much-loved individuals that they were," she said.

She said the families are delighted that the memorial has been positioned in such an important place - on the eastern edge of the park, next to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office buildings.

After the unveiling, Prince Charles, wearing a dark blue suit, laid a floral wreath with scarlet poppies and white blooms.

The words on his tribute read: "With our heartfelt thoughts and prayers".

His flowers were joined by scores of others, placed by the mourners who gathered in front of the wall to look for the names of their loved ones.

Many were struggling to hold back their tears.

A radical Islamic group, Jemaah Islamiah, was found to be responsible for the attacks.


SEE ALSO
Bali marks 2002 bomb anniversary
12 Oct 06 |  Asia-Pacific

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