Slobodan Milosevic Repudiated Charges Brought By The Hague Tribunal Against Him

On Thursday the former president of Yugoslavia Slobodan Milosevic repudiated charges against him brought by the Hague International Tribunal for Former Yugoslavia as early as May 22, 1999, declared Tom Phil, the lawyer of the former president. The text of the charges was brought to the central jail of Belgrade on Thursday by a representative of the District Court so that the defendant could read it. The judge who brought the indictment, however, had to leave the documents "at the door of the cell" where the ex-president of Yugoslavia is detained. Slobodan Milosevic declared that the Hague Tribunal is an invented court, and he does not recognize its authority." The former president of Yugoslavia is accused of crimes against humanity in operations against Kosovo Albanians. The co-defendants in this case are the president of Serbia Milan Milutinovic, the former defense minister of Yugoslavia and chief of General Staff Dragoljub Ojdanovic, former interior minister Vlajko Stoilkovic and the former deputy prime minister Nikola Sainovic. All of them, except Mr. Milosevic, are still at large. Slobodan Milosevic was arrested on April 1 this year and placed in the central jail of Belgrade on suspicion of financial irregularities. The indictment by The Hague Tribunal and warrants for arresting the accused were brought to Belgrade and handed over to the justice minister of Yugoslavia by Hans Holthaus, the secretary of the International Tribunal, on April 6. As concerns the attempt to present the indictment to Mr. Milosevic, Vlada Batic, the justice minister of Yugoslavia, told the journalists on Thursday that the indictment of the year 1999 is not related to the possible extradition of the defendant for trial by the Hague International Criminal Tribunal for Former Yugoslavia.

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