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Friday, 15 March, 2002, 15:13 GMT
Serbian deputy PM 'detained'
Breaking News
Serbian deputy Prime Minister and former military commander Momcilo Perisic has been arrested by the military authorities in Belgrade, according to an aide.

An American embassy official has also been briefly detained, US officials said.

An aide to Mr Perisic said he had been detained on Thursday night by the military security service.

One report quoted an unnamed Serbian government official as saying Mr Perisic was detained "on suspicion of espionage", but there has been no word from the military so far.

US press officer Paul Denig said an American embassy official had been "arbitrarily arrested and held incommunicado" for 15 hours after meeting a senior Serbian government official at a public restaurant on Thursday night.

Mr Denig did not identify either of those involved, nor did he say who carried out the arrests.

Mr Perisic has been sharply critical of his predecessor, General Nebojsa Pavkovic, who commanded Yugoslav troops during the war in Kosovo and against Nato in 1999.

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