Key witness against Milosevic refuses to testify

Tuesday, July 23, 2002

THE HAGUE, Netherlands -- A former president of Yugoslavia who was forcibly brought to the U.N. war crimes tribunal as a witness refused to testify Monday against Slobodan Milosevic without guarantees he cannot be prosecuted for revealing state secrets.

Zoran Lilic served as the figurehead president of the collapsing Yugoslav federation from 1993 until 1997.

The Yugoslav government agreed last Thursday to release Milosevic's close associates from the obligations to preserve state secrets. But Lilic said the government had no authority to lift the ban.

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