Official: Montenegro Leader to Visit Belgrade after Serb Reformist Win
Montenegro's President Milo Djukanovic was to travel to Belgrade Monday for the first time in two years to attend a meeting of Yugoslavia's top defence body, an official here said.
The visit would be Djukanovic's first in two years, after frosty ties with former hardline Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic pushed Podgorica closer to opting out of the Yugoslav federation, in which it is Serbia's far smaller partner.
The Yugoslav Supreme Defense Council, made up of the federal, Serbian and Montenegrin presidents, was expected to meet Monday, convened by reformist Yugoslav President Vojislav Kostunica, the official in Djukanovic's entourage told AFP.
There was no confirmation in Belgrade whether the meeting would take place nor whether Serbian President Milan Milutinovic, Milosevic's last ally still in power, would attend it.
The council was expected to discuss the replacement of General Milorad Obradovic, commander of the Second Army in Montenegro, as well as of Admiral Milan Zec, the commander of the Yugoslav navy.
Both were appointed by Milosevic without Montenegro's approval, and Djukanovic had called for the issue to be raised at the council's last meeting in Podgorica in October.
Disbanding the Seventh Battalion of Yugoslav military police, formed in Milosevic's time to exert pressure on Montenegro's pro-Western leadership, was also expected be on the agenda of Monday's meeting.
The Yugoslav federation is made up of Serbia and Montenegro, but relations between Belgrade and Podgorica have deteriorated in the last couple of years and Montenegro had been rapidly heading toward independence.
Djukanovic himself has not been in the Yugoslav capital since November 1998, when he took part in a Milosevic-chaired session of the council over the Kosovo crisis.
Kostunica, who defeated Milosevic in September federal polls, held a first meeting of the defense body in Podgorica shortly after he took office in October.
The Democratic Opposition of Serbia (DOS), which won a watershed victory in Saturday's vote for Serbia's assembly, has said one of its top priorities is to patch up ties with Podgorica, although bridge-building attempts by Kostunica's new federal administration have been met with a guarded warmth -- PODGORICA, Yugoslavia (AFP)
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