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Serbia: Opposition Attacks A Milosevic Third Term

Belgrade, 30 April 1997 (RFE/RL) - Serbia's opposition today attacked a government minister's assertion that President Slobodan Milosevic could seek a third term although the constitution limits him to two.

Deputy Prime Minister Ratko Markovic told the pro-government daily "Politika Ekspres" that Milosevic could run for re-election because he served only two years of his first five-year term before calling early elections in 1992.

Milosevic called the elections to consolidate his authority in the face of condemnation at home and abroad over Serbia's role in the outbreak of the Bosnian war earlier in the year. Serbian presidential and parliamentary elections are due by the end of this year.

Officials of the divided Zajedno opposition coalition today accused Markovic of misreading the law. They say Milosevic would violate the constitution by running for re-election.

Belgrade Mayor and Democratic Party leader Zoran Djindjic says "if President Milosevic cared at all about Serbia's reputation and credibility he would not even think about a third mandate in an obvious violation of the constitution."