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Courtside: The Kosovo Three

By Vjera Bogati in The Hague (TU 300, (10-15 February 2003)

Both sides attended a status conference to discuss the forthcoming trial, and agreed that proceedings could get underway next year.

Former Yugoslav deputy prime minister Nikola Sainovic and ex army chief of staff Dragoljub Ojdanic were joined for the first time in the dock by their co-accused - former Serb president Milan Milutinovic, who surrendered to the tribunal last month.

All three requested provisional release until the start of the trial, and this will be considered at a hearing scheduled for March 11.

Next week, the trial chamber is expected to deliver its decisions on Sainovic's motion on the form of the indictment; Ojdanic's motion on the tribunal's jurisdiction; and also on the prosecution's concept of the joint criminal enterprise in which they are accused of participating.

Vjera Bogati is an IWPR correspondent in The Hague and a journalist with SENSE news agency.