Milosevic: the mystery deepens

Curiouser and curiouser… Milosevic Possibly Manipulated His Medication to Fake Illness

A top toxicologist in the Netherlands said that he believed Slobodan Milosevic, the former Yugoslav leader, was manipulating medication to fake a medical condition, a plan that might have played a role in the heart attack that caused his death.

That theory was advanced by Dr. Donald Uges, professor of clinical and forensic toxicology at the University of Groningen, who posited that Milosevic was seeking to demonstrate that Dutch doctors could not cure him and that he should therefore be allowed to seek treatment, and freedom, in Moscow. He was imprisoned here on charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity including genocide during three Balkan wars in the 1990s.

Uges based his theory on his detection in Milosevic’s blood of a drug that had not been prescribed for him and that was not only inappropriate but, under the circumstances, dangerous. He was found on his bed in his prison cell on Saturday morning. The drug at issue is an antibiotic known as rifampicin, used to treat serious bacterial infections, such as tuberculosis. It is known to interfere with medications he was taking for high blood pressure.