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Lawyer Says Milosevic Funeral To Be Held In Belgrade

Supporters of Slobodan Milosevic sign a book of condolences in Belgrade (epa) March 13, 2006 -- A legal adviser to Slobodan Milosevic says the funeral of the former Yugoslav president will be held in Belgrade.

Lawyer Zdenko Tomanovic said Milosevic's son, Marko, will travel to The Hague to claim his father's remains.

The 64-year old Milosevic died in his cell at the war crimes tribunal in The Hague on March 11.

An autopsy revealed on March 12 that Milosevic, who suffered from a heart condition and high blood pressure, died of a heart attack.

A Dutch toxicologist said on March 13 that he found traces of a drug, rifampicin, in Milosevic's blood two weeks ago that could have counteracted the effects of hypertension medications. Donald Uges said he believes Milosevic took the drug deliberately in the hope of being allowed to go to Russia for further medical treatment.

The Russian Foreign Ministry confirmed on March 13 that it received a letter from Milosevic asking for help in getting permission to travel to Moscow for treatment.

Milosevic had been on trial at the UN war crimes tribunal since 2002 on charges of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity committed in the Balkans in the early 1990s.

(compiled from agency reports)

In Poor Health

In Poor Health

Slobodan Milosevic in an undated file photo (CTK)

HEART TROUBLES, HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE: Almost since the beginning of his trial in The Hague in February 2002, Slobodan Milosevic has been complaining of ill health. His trial has been repeatedly delayed as he sought medical treatment. As recently as February 24, the court declined Milosevic's request to travel to Russia for treatment for heart problems and elevated blood pressure, despite pledges from Moscow that Milosevic would be returned to The Hague to continue his trial on 66 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity.
"[My health is] getting worse because of the decision that gives me no chance or adequate time to prepare my defense, and that is pretty clear," Milosevic told the court on July 5, 2004. " Because of that, I think that you have an obligation to give me adequate time."
"[The judges] have been very clear that there is no evidence to suggest that Mr. Milosevic is not fit enough to stand trial," court spokesman Jim Landale told journalists the next day. "They have decided that the time has possibly come for them to assign what is called a 'standby counsel.' That is a lawyer who would work alongside Mr. Milosevic and, were Mr. Milosevic to become ill again, be able to step in and represent his interests in court."

Of related interest:

Moscow Unhappy At Milosevic Travel Ban To Russia

Milosevic Seeks Leave For Health Checks In Russia

War Crimes Trial Takes Summer Recess Amid Concerns Over Milosevic's Health

See also:

Timeline: The Political Career Of Slobodan Milosevic

Slobodan Milosevic's Life And Legacy

THE COMPLETE PICTURE: An archive of RFE/RL's coverage of the trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

Of related interest:

RFE/RL Special: The Collapse Of Tito's Yugoslavia

RFE/RL Special: Yugoslavia's Democratic Revolution

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