AFP. 1 February 2002. Milosevic brother defends him to the hilt.
MOSCOW -- The elder brother of Yugoslavia's former president Slobodan Milosevic, about to go on trial for war crimes, defended him to the hilt in an interview with AFP Friday, saying the ousted president had been fighting separatism and terrorists. Borislav Milosevic, who was Yugoslavia's ambassador to Moscow under his brother's regime, pointed to alleged links between Albanian separatist guerrillas in Kosovo and suspected terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden. "Slobodan Milosevic has said that bin Laden was in Albania in 1998. All this was raised during meetings with (US Balkans envoy) Richard Holbrooke, and with Christopher Hill, the US special envoy for Kosovo," Borislav Milosevic said. "In his (Milosevic's) own talks with these two men and in meetings between his aides (and the US envoys), they said that bin Laden is there, that he is supporting training camps ... where you have the most radical extremists," he added. "The KLA (Kosovo Liberation Army) is part of the international terrorist network and had direct links with al-Qaeda," said Milosevic's brother. Borislav Milosevic denounced the UN war crimes trial as an attempt by the United States, Britain and other NATO countries to justify their 1999 air campaign against Serbia to force Belgrade to grant Kosovo autonomy. "The court was set up to condemn Slobodan Milosevic, to wash the hands of his opponents who bombed Serbia," he said. The former Yugoslav leader had only been acting to prevent the break-up of Yugoslavia and Serbia in the face of separatism, argued Borislav. "He maintains he fought perfectly legitimately against armed separatism, defended the territory of his country and his people against terrorism," said the brother. The prosecution argued that all three wars stemmed from his plan to create a "Greater Serbia" by driving out Muslims and Croats from areas Serbs wanted to incorporate in an ethnically cleansed state. But Borislav said his brother had been acting to preserve stability in the Balkans, now very much at threat with Kosovo likely to become independent and Macedonia to split between the Slav majority and large ethnic Albanian minority. And he denied that Milosevic had been responsible for any of the alleged atrocities, such as the massacre of 7,000 Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica in July 1995. "If he's condemned it will be a terrible injustice, a historical wrong. There will be protests, in Belgrade other countries and here in Russia," he said. Milosevic, in prison in The Hague, could die in detention because of his heart condition, warned Borislav, who is in regular contact with Slobodan. "I am afraid this could kill him, he isn't young anymore, his heart is not in good condition anymore," he said. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Barry Stoller http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ProletarianNews