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War crimes muddle

The Milosevic trial is a mess and the Hague system is deeply flawed, but international justice actually works

By Chris Stephen   July 2004

The trial of Slobodan Milosevic is in trouble. Delays, mistakes, Milosevic’s failing health and the sheer size of the charge sheet mean it has taken two years to get to the halfway point in the trial – the end of the prosecution case. On 5th July Milosevic starts his defence, and don’t expect a mea culpa: the former Yugoslav president is likely to come out with all guns blazing. For a start, he has demanded that Tony Blair, Jacques Chirac and Bill Clinton appear in the witness box. This is probably not because he expects them to help his defence,…

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