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10 July 1942 |
Požarevac, Kingdom of Yugoslavia
|Occupation||leader of Yugoslav Left|
|Spouse(s)||Slobodan Milošević (1971–2006; his death)|
|Children||Marko and Marija Milošević|
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).
Blaine Harden of the New York Times wrote: "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." Milosević was eventually indicted on war crimes charges by the International Criminal Tribunal at the behest of Croatia.
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. 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 nickname was "Baca" at the time, given to her by her grandparents. It is because she was dropped ("baciti" means "to throw" in Serbian) by her father into a brook, when their grandparents, who had 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 on the forehead; and later maintained bangs[clarification needed] in order 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 remained owner of this television station until 5 October 2000.
She held a PhD in Sociology and was Professor in that subject at Belgrade University. Later, she became an honorary member of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Arts. She wrote a political column in Duga weekly during her husband's years in power. She was considered very powerful in the country and sometimes described as the only person who her husband really trusted and closely consulted. Also, as the leader of Yugoslav United Left politial party, she held some independent political influence. Mira is also the author of numerous books, which were translated and sold in Canada, Russia, China and India.
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 have had fewer authoritarian tendencies than Mira. Mira reportedly had little respect for the Bosnian Serb leaders. Vojislav Šešelj appeared before a court on 18 June 1994 to face charges of breaking microphone cables in Parliament. He read a statement, saying, "Mr. Judge, all I can say in my defense is that Milošević is Serbia's biggest criminal." Marković replied by calling Šešelj a "primitive Turk who is afraid to fight like a man, and instead sits around insulting other people's wives." Karadžić was apparently unable to telephone Milosević, because Mira would not tolerate his calls. She claimed also to be a feminist.
Commenting on her husband's arrest to face war crimes charges, Marković stated:
|“||Neither East nor West has betrayed him. The only person that can betray him is me. But people have short memories and you have to remind everyone of everything. In the early 1990s, my husband was accused by many circles, in Yugoslavia and abroad, that he had wanted to keep Yugoslavia alive, even though it was falling apart and the Croats and the Slovenes wanted to leave. That was his big sin. "Crazy Serbs and Crazy Slobo," they said, they want Yugoslavia. Now, in The Hague, they say he broke up Yugoslavia. Let them make up their minds.||”|
After her husband's arrest, Marković went to Russia. The authorities of Serbia issued an arrest warrant for her on fraud charges which was circulated via Interpol, but the Russian authorities have so far refused to arrest her. In December 2006, nine months after her husband's death during his trial in The Hague, a Serbian court also ordered her arrest on charges of ordering the murder of journalist Slavko Ćuruvija. Minister Vuk Drašković stated that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs would demand extradition of Marković from Russia. In 2008, a Serbian prosecutor announced that Marković might be tried in absentia.
Marković was largely responsible for erecting the Eternal flame in Belgrade monument in 2000 shortly before the 5 October revolution. After the 2012 elections, a spokesperson for the winning Serbian Progressive Party said that Marković and her son were welcome to return, but it took no steps to rescind the charges against them.
In March 2012 a 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.
- Dai Richards (Series Producer/Director) (January 2003). The Fall of Milosevic (Documentary). BBC TWO.
- Yugoslav Left Information on the Yugoslav Left (JUL) party. Two books - Answer and Night & Day: a Diary were published in English by Quarry Press in Canada
- Adam LeBor, "Milosevic: a biography", p.183-5
- Djukić, Slavoljub. Milosević and Marković: The End of the Serbian Fairytale. Page 93
- Adam LeBor, "Milosevic: a biography", p.114-6
- Blane Harden, "The Unrepentant", New York Times Sunday magazine, 20 January 2002.
- Milosevic's widow, son could be tried in absentia, prosecutor says
- Politika article on the Eternal flame monument
- Mirina knjiga okupila drugove;B92, 20 March 2012
- Nova knjiga Mirjane Marković;RTS, 21 March 2012
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