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Thursday, 5 July, 2001, 12:50 GMT 13:50 UK
Travel ban lifted on Milosevic's wife
Mira Markovic and Slobodan MIlosevic pictured in 1996
Mira Markovic: 'Lost' without her husband
Mira Markovic is set to be exempted from a EU visa ban so she can visit her husband, Slobodan Milosevic, who faces trial for war crimes in The Hague.

European Commission spokesman Gunnar Wiegand said the Netherlands could issue the visa under arrangements with the war crimes tribunal, adding that he guessed the process "will go ahead very soon."

I still find him very cute and likeable. What can I say? He is my hero

Mira Markovic about her husband
Ms Markovic has told told a Croat newspaper that she could do nothing without her husband, as he had "always been around in my life."

She is widely regarded as the driving force behind Mr Milosevic and has been dubbed Serbia's Lady Macbeth or the "Red Witch" because of her neo-communist views and her passion for mysticism.

As part of some remaining EU sanctions against the former Milosevic regime, members of his family are denied entry to EU countries and their foreign bank accounts have been blocked.

Short-stay visa

Mr Wiegand said a visa could be issued under the statutes of the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia.

Diplomatic sources say Ms Markovic is likely to be granted a single-entry, short-stay visa, which typically lasts up to three months.


Slobodan Milosevic and Mira Markovic met as childhood sweethearts in the provincial town of Pozarevac.

Mira Markovic attends a session in parliament
For many, Ms Markovic was the power behind the throne
Both were lonely children of unhappy families blighted by tragedy.

Mr Milosevic's parents and an uncle committed suicide.

Ms Markovic grew up knowing her mother, a famous partisan, had been executed by the Gestapo amid allegations - never proven - that she betrayed her comrades under torture.


Mr Milosevic's extradition to The Hague last week has left his wife in shock.

Family members on EU blacklist
Mira Markovic
Borislav Milosevic (brother)
Marija Milosevic (daughter)
Marko Milosevic (son)
Milica Gajic-Milosevic (daughter-in-law)
She gave vent to her feelings of loss in remarks carried by a Croatian weekly newspaper, Globus, on Wednesday.

"I cannot do anything on my own, without him. He has always been in my life and now I have to look after everything," she said.

"I still find him cute and likeable. What can I say? He is my hero," said Ms Markovic.

She also told Globus that the UN tribunal was "the Gestapo of our time".

Likewise, the Scheveningen prison where her husband is being held was "nothing but a concentration camp for Serbs, with a few Croats and Muslim thrown in for good measure."

Ms Markovic - who holds a PhD - has long been Mr Milosevic's trusted and most influential adviser.

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See also:

13 Apr 01 | Europe
Milosevic back in jail
09 Oct 00 | Europe
Profile: Marko Milosevic
10 Apr 01 | Europe
What next for Mira Markovic?
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