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UN Court Imposes Defense Lawyer On Milosevic


2 September 2004 -- The UN war crimes tribunal today ruled it will impose a defense lawyer on former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, whose doctors say he is too ill to continue representing himself.

Presiding Judge Patrick Robinson made the announcement, saying it is clear from the medical reports that Milosevic is not physically fit to defend himself.

The court did not immediately name the attorney who will act as Milosevic's defense counsel, or say when the lawyer will be assigned.

Milosevic, 63, finished his opening defense statement against charges of ethnic cleansing in the Balkans yesterday, months later than planned because of his heart condition and high blood pressure.

Prosecutors had asked judges in the 2 1/2-year-old trial in The Hague to impose a defense counsel on Milosevic, despite his objections.

(Reuters/AFP/AP)

For full coverage of Slobodan Milosevic's trial at the International Criminal Tribunal in The Hague, see RFE/RL's webpage "Milosevic on Trial".
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