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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 12 Hansard (12 November) . . Page.. 3401 ..

MR HUMPHRIES (continuing):

As of today, there are a confirmed 62 Australians dead and serious concerns are held for a further 27. Only in the last couple of days two other young Australians have lost their lives, I understand as a result of serious burns. It is the nature of burns, of course, that a person may linger for days or weeks before succumbing to their injuries.

In total, Indonesian officials estimate that some 180 people were killed in the attack. It is obvious, at least to our imaginations I suppose, that bombs in closely packed public places are terrible implements of destruction. The aim of terrorists employing these tactics is to wreak not just death and destruction on those being targeted but also to create maximum havoc through the injuring and maiming of other victims.

The devastation caused by this awful act of terrorism has been enormous. There are hundreds of permanently injured people, both locals and visitors, in addition to those killed and, of course, there is also the economic devastation to the local and Indonesian economies that will be felt for years to come. The names Sari Club and Paddy's will be etched in the Australian psyche.

I know that there are members of this place who have been to Indonesia-indeed, who have been to Indonesia only in the last few months, particularly to Kuta Beach. I think the memories of those members will be forever marred by the horror and sadness of what subsequently took place in that beautiful setting. Kuta Beach is or was the playground of many young Australians and the nightclubs that were targeted by the terrorists were packed with young visitors from around the world-Canadians, New Zealanders, British and American citizens and, of course, many Balinese.

Mr Speaker, the Chief Minister spoke about mateship, and that indeed is a very important quality, Australian characteristic, to be talking about in the context of this motion. On 12 October Australians were hit hard by the act of persons as yet unknown, but the quality of Australian mateship was much in evidence in the aftermath of those explosions. Australians who did not know particular individuals in the crowd were quick to render assistance. People who themselves were seriously injured went back into the scene of devastation to render assistance to those more seriously injured.

Australians from all over Bali congregated at the site of the explosions to render assistance and, of course, Australian defence forces and others were mobilised quickly to come to the assistance of those who were injured or dying.

One might imagine that that quality of mateship was the kind of Australian essence which was being targeted by this explosion. We don't know with certainty who laid this terrible trap but we can only assume they intended to send some kind of signal or warning to the Australian people, the Australian government perhaps, and in doing so they no doubt intended to shatter or affect the confidence of Australians as a community. I think that the actions of those who rose to the occasion in Bali, and in Australia subsequently, demonstrate that most essential of Australian characteristics-a sense of compassion for each other, which has not been dented or affected by this terrible accident.

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