Survivors return to Bali blasts site
Fri, 12 Oct 2012 11:40a.m.
By Laura McQuillan
Eight Kiwi survivors of the Bali bombing that killed 202 people a decade ago have returned to the beach where the blasts took place.
Three New Zealanders - Jamie Wellington, 31, Mark Parker and Jared Gane, both 27 - were killed in the terrorist attack on the popular tourist spot of Kuta on October 12, 2002.
Eighty-eight Australians, 32 Indonesians and 24 British citizens were also killed in the blasts which hit the Sari Club and Paddy's Pub.
A further 240 people were injured.
On Friday afternoon, more than 1000 people will gather at an Australian-led memorial service at the Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park to remember those who lost their lives.
Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully is representing New Zealand, alongside New Zealand's ambassador to Indonesia David Taylor.
Eight New Zealanders who were injured or suffered lasting trauma from the attack will light a candle to remember the victims.
Bali-based New Zealand nurse Stephanie Breen, who was awarded an Order of Australia Medal for helping the injured, told TVNZ she will never forget what she saw at the hospital a decade ago.
Friday's service will be a time of reflection for her.
"I opened the doors and there were just people lying everywhere on the floors and I swear my heart just fell to the floor," she said.
The New Zealand government last week offered to help pay for families of those killed in the explosion to fly to Bali for the commemorations, but the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade told NZ Newswire none had taken up the offer.
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, former prime minister John Howard and Leader of the Opposition Tony Abbott are also attending.
Bali is on the highest alert level and security will be tight on Friday after police received "credible" information about a plot to attack dignitaries at the service.
Bags will be searched and any dangerous objects confiscated before attendees are allowed in.
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