September 11, (THEWILL) – As the country marks the 20th anniversary of her most horrendous single day of terrorist onslaughts, the United States of America joined the world to line up events on Saturday to mourn the dead and denigrate terrorism.
A total of 2,977 people died in the four aeroplane-weaponised terror attacks of 9th September 2001.
Among them was a Nigerian, Godwin Ajala, 33, who did a security job at the plane-bombed World Trade Centre, while taking part-time law studies in New York.
Ajala suffered no injury originally and joined in rescue operations during which a piece of debris slammed into him, leaving him in a coma that tapered off into his death four days later.
US President Joe Biden commemorates the 20th anniversary on Saturday by visiting every of the sites the hijacked planes crashed into, as a mark of honour to the victims of the devastating assault.
Biden is not scheduled to make remarks at any of the sites.
Penning a message to President Biden, the Queen wrote: “As we mark the 20th anniversary of the terrible attacks on September 11, 2001, my thoughts and prayers, and those of my family and the entire nation, remain with the victims, survivors and families affected, as well as the first responders and rescue workers called to duty.
“My visit to the site of the World Trade Centre in 2010 is held fast in my memory.
“It reminds me that as we honour those from many nations, faiths and backgrounds who lost their lives, we also pay tribute to the resilience and determination of the communities who joined together to rebuild.”
Describing 9/11 as a “date which will live in infamy,” Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “That we are coming together today –in sorrow but also in faith and resolve– demonstrates the failure of terrorism.”
Downing Street indicated that the PM’s address would be heard at a memorial event at the Olympic Park in east London on Saturday.
It added: “On a crystal clear morning, terrorists attacked the United States with the simple goal of killing or maiming as many human beings as possible, and by inflicting such bloodshed in the world’s greatest democracy, they tried to destroy the faith of free peoples everywhere in the open societies which terrorists despise and which we cherish….
“But while the terrorists imposed their burden of grief and suffering, and while the threat persists today, we can now say with the perspective of 20 years that they failed to shake our belief in freedom and democracy; they failed to drive our nations apart, or cause us to abandon our values, or to live in permanent fear.”
The attacks, planned by al-Qaeda from Afghanistan, saw four US passenger jets seized by suicide attackers.
Two of the planes were flown into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Centre in New York, another plane crashed into the Pentagon, outside the US capital, Washington DC, while the fourth plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania after passengers fought back terrorists who had hijacked the flight.