Mirjana Marković

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Mirjana Marković
Born (1942-07-10) 10 July 1942 (age 72)
Požarevac, Kingdom of Yugoslavia
Occupation leader of Yugoslav Left
Criminal charge
Fraud
Murder of journalist Slavko Ćuruvija
Criminal status Exiled in Russia
Spouse(s) Slobodan Milošević (1971–2006;his death)
Children Marko and Marija Milošević
Parents Moma Marković
Vera Miletić

Mirjana "Mira" Marković (pronounced [mǐrjana mǐːra mǎːrkɔʋit͡ɕ]; born 10 July 1942) is the widow and childhood friend of former Yugoslav and Serbian president Slobodan Milošević. She was the leader of the Yugoslav Left political party (JUL/ЈУЛ is the Serbian acronym).

"Working together, Marković and her husband Milosević jointly presided over the transformation of the Serbian government into a criminal enterprise. Beyond the prosecution of the Balkan wars, the Milosević regime made a handful of friends very rich, inspired a number of gangland-style murders and impoverished the country."[1] Milosević was eventually indicted on war crimes charges by the International Criminal Tribunal, while Marković today lives in Russia despite Serbian requests for extradition.

Personal life[edit]

Marković is the daughter of Moma Marković, a wartime communist partisan, and Vera Miletić. Her aunt was Davorjanka Paunović, private secretary and mistress of Josip Broz Tito. Her mother was a member of Tito's partisans during the war. She was captured by German troops and allegedly released sensitive information, under torture. Upon return, she was executed by the partisans, allegedly under the orders of her own father.[2] However, according to her grandmother, the story is a little different. Her father had betrayed her to the Gestapo in order to get rid of her, and she was captured as a Partisan courier, wearing clothes which included a handkerchief with flowers. She was then executed in Banjica prison by the Germans.

Her father had five children out of wedlock all around Serbia. He had three legitimate children later on, and his wife made him recognize all of his children after the war. Thus, he finally admitted Mira Marković-Miletić (her mother's maiden name, that she carried until then, after her mother Vera), as his daughter when she was 13. It was then that Slobodan Milosević became interested in her. She wore a flower in her hair in memory of her mother.

Her nickname was "Baca" at the time, that her grandparents gave her. It is because she was dropped ("baciti" means "to throw" in Serbian) by her father into the brook, when their grandparents, who lost all their children, were hiding her from Chetniks in the local mill. When they called him and gave Mira to him, he dropped her shouting "Ne treba mi pasce od kuje!". ("I don't need a hound from the bitch"). She was left scarred at the forehead; and later maintained bangs to hide the scar.

Marković met Slobodan Milošević when they were in high school together. They married in 1965. The couple had two children, son Marko and daughter Marija, who founded a Serbian television Košava in 1998, and she was an owner of this television until 5 October 2000.

Education[edit]

She was professor of Sociology at Belgrade University, in which she had PhD. Later on, she became honour member of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Arts. She had a political column in Duga weekly during her husband's years in power. She was considered very powerful and the only person who her husband trusted and consulted. Also, as the leader of Yugoslav United Left, she used to have independent political influence. Mira is also the author of numerous books, which are translated and sold in Canada, Russia, China and India.[3]

Political views[edit]

Marković's political views tended to be hard-line Communist. Although she often claimed that she agreed with her husband on everything, Slobodan seems to have been less of an authoritarian than Mira.[4] Mira had little respect for the Bosnian Serb leaders. Vojislav Šešelj appeared before a court on 18 June 1994 after he broke microphone cables in the Parliament. He read off a statement, saying, "Mr. Judge, all I can say in my defense is that Milošević is Serbia's biggest criminal." Marković replied by calling Seselj a "primitive Turk who is afraid to fight like a man, and instead sits around insulting other people's wives."[5] Karadžić was apparently unable to telephone Milosević, because Mira would not tolerate his calls. She was also a feminist.[6]

When commenting on her husband's arrest, Marković stated:

After her husband's arrest, Marković went in exile to Russia. The authorities of Serbia have issued an arrest warrant for her on fraud charges which has been circulated via Interpol, but the Russian authorities have refused to arrest her. In December 2006, nine months after her husband's death during his trial at The Hague, a Serbian court ordered her arrest on charges of ordering the murder of journalist Slavko Ćuruvija. Minister Vuk Drašković stated that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will demand extradition of Marković from Russia. In 2008, a Serbian prosecutor announced that Marković may be tried in absentia.[8]

Marković was largely responsible for erecting the Eternal flame in Belgrade monument in 2000 shortly before the 5 October revolution.[9] After the 2012 elections, a spokesperson for the victorious Serbian nationalist party said that Markovic and her son were welcome back, but did not drop the charges against them.[10]

In March 2012, a book, collection of her columns for Pravda from 2007 until 2008 as well as for online portal Sloboda from 2010 until 2011, titled Destierrada e imperdida was published in Belgrade by Treći milenijum, a publishing house owned by Hadži Dragan Antić.[11][12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/2002/01/20/magazine/20MILO.html
  2. ^ Dai Richards (Series Producer/Director) (January 2003). The Fall of Milosevic (Documentary). BBC TWO. 
  3. ^ Yugoslav Left Information on the Yugoslav Left (JUL) party. Two books - Answer and Night & Day a Diary are published in English by Quarry Press in Canada
  4. ^ Adam LeBor, "Milosevic: a biography", p.183-5
  5. ^ Djukić, Slavoljub. Milosević and Marković: The End of the Serbian Fairytale. Page 93
  6. ^ Adam LeBor, "Milosevic: a biography", p.114-6
  7. ^ Blane Harden, "The Unrepentant", New York Times Sunday magazine, 20 January 2002.
  8. ^ Milosevic's widow, son could be tried in absentia, prosecutor says
  9. ^ Politika article on the Eternal flame monument
  10. ^ http://bigstory.ap.org/article/official-milosevic-family-welcome-back-serbia
  11. ^ Mirina knjiga okupila drugove;B92, 20 March 2012
  12. ^ Nova knjiga Mirjane Marković;RTS, 21 March 2012