- Associated Press - Saturday, September 10, 2011

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — A mother in Malaysia greeted her dead son. People in Manila left roses for the victim who helped give them homes. And mourners in Tokyo stood before a piece of steel from ground zero, remembering the 23 bank employees who never made it out alive.

A decade after 9/11, the day that changed so much for so many people, the world’s leaders and citizens paused to reflect Sunday. But there were also those — including a former Malaysian prime minister — who reiterated old claims that the U.S. government itself was behind the attacks.

From Sydney to Spain, formal ceremonies paid tribute to the nearly 3,000 who perished from more than 90 countries. And, in a reminder that threats remain, Swedish police said four people were arrested Sunday on suspicion of preparing a terror attack, as authorities in Washington and New York beefed up security in response to intelligence about possible plans for a car bomb attack.

For some people, the pain never stops. In Malaysia, Pathmawathy Navaratnam woke up Sunday in her suburban Kuala Lumpur home and did what she’s done every day for the past decade: wish her son Vijayashanker Paramsothy “good morning.”

The 23-year-old financial analyst was killed in the attacks on New York.

“He is my sunshine. He has lived life to the fullest, but I can’t accept that he is not here anymore,” said Ms. Navaratnam. “I am still living, but I am dead inside.”

In Manila, dozens of former shanty dwellers offered roses, balloons and prayers for another 9/11 victim, American citizen Marie Rose Abad. The neighborhood used to be a shantytown that reeked of garbage. But in 2004, Mrs. Abad’s Filipino-American husband, Rudy, built 50 brightly colored homes, fulfilling his late wife’s wish to help impoverished Filipinos.

The village has since been named after her.

“It’s like a new life sprang from the death of Marie Rose and so many others,” said villager Nancy Waminal.

Players from the American Eagles rugby team were among the first to mark the anniversary at a memorial service in the town of New Plymouth in New Zealand. The players, who are participating in the Rugby World Cup tournament, listened to a speech by U.S. Ambassador David Huebner, whose brother Rick survived the attacks on the World Trade Center.

“We watched live on television the brutal murder of 3,000 individuals,” Mr. Huebner said. “We reacted with near unanimous horror and sadness.”

The Sept. 11 attacks spawned many conspiracy theories around the world, especially among Islamists, who allege American or Israeli involvement.

Former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, a vitriolic critic of the West, wrote on his blog that Arab Muslims are incapable of “planning and strategizing” such attacks. He added that “it is not unthinkable” for former President George W. Bush to have lied about who was responsible for 9/11.

He wrote that the World Trade Center twin towers “came down nicely upon themselves” and looked more like “planned demolition of buildings” than a collapse, he wrote.

In Pakistan, supporters of an Islamist political party staged anti-U.S. protests to mark the anniversary, holding up banners that repeated conspiracy theories. The protests by about 100 people were held in the capital, Islamabad, and Multan city.

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