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Anniversary of Bali Bombing Commemorated in Australia

National flags flew at half mast and prayer services were held across Australia on Sunday to commemorate the first anniversary of Bali bombings which killed 88 Australians.

Around 4,000 people gathered in Kings Park in Perth, Western Australia, to hear the Swan Bells tolling 16 times, the number of West Australians killed in the Bali bombings.

They also witnessed the official opening of a memorial honoringthe dead in the park.

Western Australia's Premier Geoff Gallop paid tribute to the efforts of volunteers, emergency and health workers, and the widercommunity for the support offered in the aftermath of the tragedy.

In Sydney, New South Wales, prayer services were held in Anglican and Catholic cathedrals to mourn the victims.

At Dolphins Point on Coogee beach, about 1,000 people laid flowers beneath a four-meter bronze sculpture dedicated to those killed in the Bali tragedy.

In Melbourne, Victoria, more than 250 people including politicians and diplomats attended a service held in St Patrick's Catholic Cathedral.

At a gathering in Brisbane, Queensland, State Premier Peter Beattie called for 88 seconds of silence in remembrance of as manyAustralians killed in the Bali blasts.

He said it is important that Australians "shouldn't allow terrorism to force us to change our character."

In Darwin, Northern Territory, about 100 people attended a memorial service at Darwin's Memorial Uniting Church Sunday afternoon.

They prayed for victims, survivors and even the perpetrators ofthe tragedy during the 45-minute church service.

Australian Prime Minister John Howard and Opposition Leader Simon Crean attended the memorial events in Bali on Sunday morning,which were broadcast live on Australia TV channels.

(Xinhua News Agency October 13, 2003)

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