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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 12 Hansard (12 November) . . Page.. 3400 ..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

Australians are admired for a great many characteristics, including our sense of humour, our irreverence and our willingness to stand up for what we believe is right. We are also admired for our tenacity, our refusal to give up. The Australian people will never be cowered by terrorism. But we must not forget that we live in dangerous and unpredictable times, and we cannot ignore the possibility of further attacks on Australians, or on Australia itself.

In Bali, Australians lost sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, husbands and wives. We lost friends, colleagues and team-mates. And we lost our sense of security, which had already been shaken as a result of the terrorist attacks on America last year. Clearly, we can no longer imagine that terrorism is a distant threat, or one that doesn't relate to Australia.

We must do what we can to eliminate the root causes of terrorism, which will require us to attempt more deeply to understand its causes and the basis of the hatred it generates; to work for peace so that families have no need to grieve. Also, we must not let this threat change who we are, and what makes us Australian. By this, I mean characteristics such as those I mentioned earlier-our sense of humour, irreverence and willingness to stand up for what we believe in.

But I am also referring to our tolerance. Mr Speaker, it would be a tragedy of immense proportions if we allowed the perpetrators of the outrage in Bali to sow the seeds of intolerance in Australia. The Canberra community has a well-deserved reputation for tolerance. In fact, we do more than just tolerate diversity: we actively encourage and celebrate it. In the aftermath of the attack on Bali our reputation for tolerance has been maintained. I urge the Canberra community to do what it can to put all our members at ease, and to continue our remarkable tradition of tolerance.

Just as we are united in our love of this country, we are united in grief for those who were lost or injured. Mr Speaker, I know that my words will do little to console those who lost loved ones in Bali but I hope that the families in Australia, Indonesia and other countries can take some comfort in the knowledge that the Assembly and the people of the ACT share their grief and mourn their loss.

MR HUMPHRIES (Leader of the Opposition): The opposition wishes to be associated with the sentiments of the Chief Minister's motion, which conveys a feeling of anger as well as remorse and condolence to victims of this outrage.

What happened in Kuta in Indonesia on 12 October, one month ago today, was an act of outrage. In the words of the Prime Minister, it was "evil and wicked". The indiscriminate attacks on Indonesians, Australians and so many other visitors to Indonesia's holiday playground brought immediate worldwide condemnation against those responsible for this act of terror and those individuals and groups who sympathise with such an action.

The final number of Australians that were killed is unfortunately not yet conclusively known. While the terrible job of identification continues with scientific precision, we do know that almost 90 were killed and close to 150 were injured, many very seriously.

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