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Wednesday, December 7, 2022
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Wednesday, December 7, 2022
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    Last surviving Bali bomber’s apology rejected by victims

    JAKARTA (AFP) – The last surviving bomber in the Bali blasts that killed over 200 people two decades ago expressed regret for the deadliest terror attack in Southeast Asia ahead of its 20th anniversary today, but victims rejected his apology.

    Ali Imron was sentenced to life in prison for his role in the blasts that ripped through an entertainment venue on the Indonesian resort island, killing 202 people including 88 Australians.

    “I will regret it until I die. And I will apologise until I die,” he told AFP uncuffed in front of an Indonesian flag and a picture of President Joko Widodo at Jakarta’s sprawling metro police headquarters.

    But victims and the Australian government have refused to accept the remorse of the remaining members of the Bali bomb cell.

    “When people are in a bind they will say anything to get out of the problem,” said Thiolina Marpaung, a 47-year-old survivor left with permanent eye injuries.

    “He said that because he was sentenced to life.”

    Convicted Bali bomber Ali Imron during an interview at a police detention house in Jakarta. PHOTO: AFP

    Imron helped mastermind the bombings. He built the devices, planted a bomb outside the United States (US) consulate in Bali, and trained the attackers who detonated a suicide vest and a van loaded with explosives.

    The 52-year-old is the only living Bali bomber still alive after the attack.

    Now he languishes in a drug offenders’ facility, instead of prison, after claiming repentance and aiding Indonesia’s deradicali-sation efforts.

    His brothers Amrozi and Mukhlas were executed by firing squad on a central Javan prison island. But Imron was saved from execution after showing remorse and divulging the plot to investigators.

    The convicted mass murderer now helps the Indonesian government in a deradicalisation programme experts criticise for ineffectiveness.

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