The much publicized war-crimes trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, which opened on Feb. 12 in The Hague, could undermine Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic's already shaky political situation at home. Most Serbs have little sympathy for Milosevic, but view The Hague tribunal as an anti-Serb show trial. Since Djindjic engineered Milosevic's extradition under pressure from the U.S. last year, Serbs partly blame the Prime Minister for the bad publicity.
Although Djindjic's popularity rating is just 14%, he is pressing ahead with an unpopular economic restructuring that could hike unemployment above 30%. That could hurt Djindjic just before new elections expected this fall.
Edited by Rose Brady