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Former advisor: Milosevic won't leave Serbia

Belgrade, Thursday -- Slobodan Milosevic is unlikely ever to leave Yugoslavia and would seek guarantees against extradition to The Hague from the citizens and opposition of Serbia, a former advisor said today.

Zvonimir Trajkovic, who was an advisor to Milosevic when he was president of Serbia during the early nineties, was commenting on an article in the New York Times which suggested that the US and Russia were conducting secret negotiations on an exit strategy for Milosevic, with guarantees that he would not appear before the Hague Tribunal.

Hague Tribunal chief prosecutor Carla del Ponte stated today that the withdrawal of the war crimes indictment against Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic was out of the question. "No deals are possible," Del Ponte told press. She emphasised that the only existing possibility for Milosevic was to be extradited and tried by the Hague Tribunal.

Hague Tribunal spokesman Paul Risley stated that the court had only just begun investigating Kosovo Liberation Army war crimes because it was working in chronological order. Risley was responding to a question put to him on BBC radio on why the Serbs' numerous appeals for such an investigation and seemed ignored. He added that the crimes committed by Slobodan Milosevic's army and police last spring had been incomparably greater in scale.

Source: B92

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