Milosevic under guard
BELGRADE, Yugoslavia -- Former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic has been placed under 24-hour police surveillance by the Serbia's new government.
Serbia's new interior minister Dusan Mihajlovic, asked on Thursday if he had carried out the threat he made before taking office to put Milosevic under watch, said: "You can take it that it's been done."
Mihajlovic, appointed last week as part of Serbia's new government, had promised to take the measure because Milosevic is wanted by the U.N. war crimes tribunal and is also, he said, being investigated by local justice authorities.
Many reformist Serbian and Yugoslav leaders have said Milosevic should not be transferred to the U.N. tribunal in The Hague, which has indicted him on Kosovo war crimes charges.
They accuse the tribunal of anti-Serb bias and say Milosevic should stand trial in a domestic court on charges of vote-rigging and corruption.
Milosevic is widely believed to be still living in the former official presidential residence in Belgrade's exclusive Dedinje suburb.
Mihajlovic said Yugoslav President Vojislav Kostunica, who took office in October after a mass uprising forced Milosevic from power, had allowed his predecessor to remain in the residence.
"Kostunica did not want to move in and he left it for Milosevic to use. That is their arrangement," Mihajlovic said.
He said the building was being guarded by the Yugoslav army as it was federal government property and a special police unit was responsible for protecting Milosevic himself.
The guard on Milosevic comes days after Zoran Djindjic, Serbia's new prime minister, sacked Rade Markovic, the state security chief and a key ally of Milosevic.
Djindic is among those who have pledged to hold Milosevic accountable for past crimes.
"We shall not organise a witch hunt, but we won't let the members of the former regime hold on to the assets they plundered from the people," Djindjic said.
Reuters contributed to this report.
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Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
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