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A Mourn for the Misbegotten

Balinese Gather to Pray for the Dead Bali Bombers and Their Victims.

(11/17/2008) The execution of the Bali Bombers by a firing squad in Central Java just past midnight on November 2, 2008, brought little celebration from the residents of Bali, hoping that the death of the three would bring closure to a tragic chapter in Bali's history.

On the morning of the execution, hundreds gathered at the Anand Asram Foundation on Jalan Pura Mertasari in Kuta to pray for the souls of the three criminals - Amrozy, Imam Samudra and Ali Gufron (a/k/a Mukhlas). Prior to the prayer service, a number of people spoke against violence in any form, including the execution of convicted murderers. Nonetheless, many attending the ceremony accepted that the death of the 3 Bali bombers represented a necessary remedial step for a chronic problem afflicting Indonesian society. The speakers also took the opportunity to underline that they felt no hate for the three men, despite the injustice and injury they had visited upon the island of Bali.





One of the speakers told the press, "We are praying for Amrozy and his colleagues as well as their victims, we hope all with obtain peace in a better place."

Accordingly, prayers were offered from the Koran and the Bible, as well as passages from Buddhist and Hindu religious texts.

Another speaker said, "only through love can the differences between us be eliminated."

Also attending the prayer ceremony was a survivor of the Bali bombing of 2002, Tumini, who said she was both glad and satisfied that the bombers were now dead, but no longer bore any hatred for the three. Tumini, who attended the prayers with her daughter, added: "It's finished. What's important is that such a thing never happens again."

The Chairman of the National Integration Movement (NIM) - an organization who helped organize the prayers, Wayan Sayoga, said the inter-denominational prayers offered on the day of the execution were intended to help heal the wounds suffered by both the victims and the perpetrators of the 2002 bombing. Through such prayers, the NIM Chairman said he "hopes that an end will come to violence in the name of religion and that the legacy of hate and anger left by the Bali bombers would end with their execution earlier this morning." Adding, "let us live lives full of peace."

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[Anand Krishna Center]