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BELGRADE, Serbia — Slobodan Milosevic's widow and son should return from their exile in Russia now that the late autocrat's allies have returned to power in the Balkan country, a senior Serbian official said Wednesday.
Milosevic's widow, Mirjana Markovic, and son Marko Milosevic fled to Russia after Serbia's wartime leader was ousted in 2000. They have been granted refugee status there, despite warrants for their arrest issued by the former pro-Western Serbian government which was defeated by nationalists in elections in May.
Both Markovic — who was an influential leftist official during Milosevic's reign — and Marko Milosevic are still officially wanted by Belgrade for alleged cigarette smuggling worth millions of dollars during international sanctions imposed on Serbia during the 1990s.
Although he did not say whether the charges will be dropped, Serbia's government minister Milutin Mrkonjic said he hoped they would "finally" return.
"I hope we'll now finally finish that job," Mrkonjic, of Milosevic-founded Socialist Party, told Belgrade's B-92 radio. "They believe they are not responsible on the charges they have faced in Serbia."
Milosevic died in 2006 while on trial at a United Nations war crimes tribunal.
The Kremlin is a close ally of the ruling Serb nationalists.