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Opposition Leader Leery Of Milosevic Vow

Sun., Feb. 9, 1997

An opposition leader told 10,000 protesters Saturday he suspects Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic may break his promise to honor the opposition’s victory in municipal elections.

The government touched off demonstrations by refusing to recognize the victories in 14 of the biggest municipalities, including the national capital, Belgrade, in the Nov. 17 vote. The demonstrations were in their 81st day Saturday.

Milosevic, whose neo-communist Socialists control the national government, agreed on Tuesday to pass a law honoring the victories.

But two of the municipalities - New Belgrade and Mladenovac - are omitted from the proposed law.

“The law is not very clear,” opposition leader Vuk Draskovic said, adding that Milosevic could be trying to make one of the political maneuvers for which he is known.

The opposition has taken office in several cities where the victories were not disputed but in many places found coffers empty after years of mismanagement, corruption and budget deficits.

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