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Last Updated: Monday, 13 March 2006, 10:38 GMT
Milosevic's body to be released
Former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic

The body of former Yugoslav leader Slobodan Milosevic will be released to relatives on Monday but it is unclear where his funeral will take place.

His widow has indicated she favours Serbia but she would face charges if she returned from exile in Moscow. A state funeral has been ruled out.

Preliminary autopsy results show Mr Milosevic died of a heart attack while on trial for war crimes in The Hague.

However, toxicological test results for poisoning are not yet complete.

The war crimes tribunal said they were not expected on Monday.

Speculation over what caused his death mounted after a letter was made public on Sunday in which Mr Milosevic complained he was being given drugs used to treat leprosy and tuberculosis - which have the power to cancel the effect of his prescribed medication for blood pressure.

HAVE YOUR SAY
His death came 15 years too late
Ana, Belgrade

But one of the toxicologists involved in the testing said he thought Mr Milosevic had deliberately taken the wrong medicine.

Donald Uges told the Agence France-Presse news agency Mr Milosevic wanted a "one-way ticket to Moscow" for treatment.

Mr Milosevic's letter - written a day before he died - was addressed to the Russian foreign ministry. In it he renewed his plea - rejected by the tribunal - for treatment in Moscow.

Family divided

Mr Milosevic's widow, Mirjana Markovic, told Serbian newspaper Vecernje Novosti she had not decided where he would be buried.

But she added: "If it was only up to me to decide it would be Pozarevac," Slobodan Milosevic's birthplace 80km (50 miles) east of the capital, Belgrade.

Mirjana Markovic lives with son Marko in Moscow and both would face charges should they return to Serbia.

Street vendor with calendars in Banja Luka, Bosnia
Serb authorities fear a funeral there would be embarrassing

Serbian President Boris Tadic has ruled out a pardon for them and said a state funeral for Mr Milosevic would be "completely inappropriate".

Mr Milosevic's daughter Marija said he should be buried in Lijeva Reka - the family's ancestral home in Montenegro.

She opposed a burial in Russia, which has been suggested as an alternative.

Authorities in Serbia and Montenegro fear a burial there could spark an embarrassing show of support from the former president's hardcore supporters.

Mr Milosevic was found dead in his cell at the UN war crimes tribunal in The Hague on Saturday morning.

He was charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity for his alleged central role in the wars in Bosnia, Croatia and Kosovo during the 1990s.

He also faced genocide charges over the 1992-95 Bosnia war, in which 100,000 people died.

Blood sample

Preliminary results of an autopsy show he died of "myocardial infarction", the medical term for a heart attack.

MILOSEVIC TRIAL FACTS
295 witnesses testified
5,000 exhibits presented in court
466 days of hearings

Mr Milosevic had been suffering from two heart conditions, the report added, without naming them. The toxicological study is still awaited.

Dutch public television NOS reported on Sunday that a blood sample taken from Mr Milosevic had shown traces of drugs often used to treat leprosy or tuberculosis.

Correspondents say the tribunal's monitoring of inmates is now under close scrutiny because Mr Milosevic's death came within a week of the suicide of a former rebel Croatian Serb leader, Milan Babic.


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