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Milosevic Kidnapping to be
Challenged in Dutch Courts
[13 July 2001]
The International Committee to Defend Slobodan Milosevic held another press conference on 12 July at 11 AM Dutch time, in Amsterdam. Chris Black, Vice-Chairman of the Committee in charge of legal work, briefed the press. Black says the following 'Reuters' report is pretty accurate, except Black did not call what happened to Slobodan Milseovic an "arrest."
Milosevic Arrest Set for Court Challenge
By Paul Gallagher
Slobodan Milosevic plans to challenge his arrest and detention by the U.N. war crimes tribunal in a Dutch court within the next four weeks, an international support committee said on Thursday.
"An action will be commenced in Dutch courts in a very short time...to contest the legality of his arrest in Yugoslavia and the legality of his detention by the ICTY (International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia),"said Canadian lawyer Christopher Black, a member of the committee.
The International Committee to Defend Slobodan Milosevic has consulted Dutch lawyers about initiating an action to secure the release of the former Yugoslav president, who is facing war crimes charges in The Hague after his transfer into U.N. custody by the Serbian government last month.
The committee was formed on March 24, exactly two years after NATO launched its air war against Yugoslavia with the aim of ending Serb repression of ethnic Albanians in Kosovo province.
"I have instructions from Mr. Milosevic to engage in such an action,"Black, who visited the ousted leader in prison earlier this week, told a news conference. But Black told Reuters he thought the chances of securing the former Yugoslav strongman's release were ``probably not that good."
The committee said it might also consider challenging the right of the U.N. court to detain and try Milosevic at European Commission level and seek support for its campaign at the U.N. General Assembly. The committee questioned the legitimacy of the U.N. tribunal and reiterated that it considered Milosevic a ''political prisoner.'' It branded the court ``a parody and mockery of justice."
"(Milosevic) should be released. His arrest in Yugoslavia was outright kidnapping,"Black told reporters.
Milosevic, who last week made his initial appearance before a tribunal he dubbed ``illegal,"has so far not appointed defense counsel.
Kept in isolation at the U.N.'s detention center on the outskirts of The Hague, Milosevic was missing his family and his native Serbia very much, Black said. Milosevic's wife has applied for a visa to visit him. Dutch authorities have yet to announce whether they will grant it.
"Mr. Milosevic suffers, really suffers, from being separated from his family and his people,"Black said. ``He is expecting to be back home soon."
1) "Milosevic: 'I Am the Moral Winner!'". Report from Chris Black on his meeting with Slobodan Milosevic in The Hague.
2) "Reichstag Fire Trial, the Sequel,"
by Jared Israel. Biting account of Slobodan Milsoevic's
appearance the the 'Tribunal.'
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