DENPASAR, KOMPAS.com – Hundreds of mourners and survivors commemorated on Wednesday, Oct. 12, the 20th anniversary of the bombings that killed more than 200 people on the Indonesian resort island of Bali.
Grieving families, attack survivors, and representatives from several embassies attended memorial services in Bali -- where Al-Qaeda-linked militants detonated bombs at a bar and nightclub in 2002 -- and Australia.
"It's okay that some people have forgotten what happened 20 years ago but there are still real victims, there are children who lost their parents in the bombing," said Thiolina Marpaung, one of the organizers of the memorial, who was left with permanent eye injuries in the attack.
"I don't want them to be forgotten," the 47-year-old told AFP.
Hundreds gathered for a mass prayer at a monument for victims built meters from the site of the blasts to mark Southeast Asia's deadliest terrorist attack and remember the 202 victims.
Most were foreign holidaymakers from more than 20 countries but Australia suffered the biggest loss, with 88 dead.
"It's just sad for everybody. Everybody that is up there. We just come to pay our respects," Australian tourist Nole Porter told AFP.
A candlelight vigil organized by victims' relatives will be held at the monument later in the evening.
Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese told a memorial service in Sydney Wednesday that the horror of the bombings was swiftly countered by incredible acts of self-sacrifice and bravery.