Source Pravda.Ru

Dmitry Litvinovich: Milosevic and the Hague Tribunal: just getting started

Yugoslavia’s former president, Slobodan Milosevic, had to face the international Tribunal in the Hague again today. Milosevic listened to the list of all 29 points of the charges against him, which were read out to him in the Serbian language.

Milosevic was earlier charged of crimes connected with his connection with the military conflicts in Croatia and Kosovo. During the latest court session, Milosevic was charged of one of the gravest crimes: participation genocide and crimes against the humanity, which were said to have been committed in Bosnia during 1992-1995.

It is really very amazing how quickly they are bringing charges against Milosevic, one after another. It seems like he will be sentenced to more than a lifetime of imprisonment.

Milosevic is trying to stay calm in the face of such a situation; after all, the friends and allies he had in the past abandoned him. Milosevic does not acknowledge the legitimacy of the Hague Tribunal. He is not likely to change his position during today’s session. In this case, the court will make a record that would read that Milosevic does not consider himself to be guilty. This has already happened when the former Yugoslavian leader was charged with crimes committed in Kosovo and Croatia.

The trial of the ex-president of Yugoslavia is a long process. The prosecution is now making up the base of the pending case. As Florance Hartman, an attendant of the Hague Tribunal said, "the announcement of the indictment was only the first step on the long road to justice." The litigation itself will start only on February 12, 2002; it is expected to be completed not later than 2004.

Dmitry Litvinovich PRAVDA.Ru

Translated by Dmitry Sidakov

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