Former Serbian President Milan Milutinovic dies

Former Serbian President (1997-2002) Milan Milutinovic has died at the age of 81, Serbian First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic said.

“Last greetings to Milan Milutinovic, former President of the Republic of Serbia <…>,” he wrote on his Instagram (owned by Meta — recognized as extremist in Russia and banned).

Later, the current President of Serbia, Alexander Vučić, also expressed his condolences to the Dacic family. “It is with sadness that I received the news of the death of Milan Milutinovic, a man who devotedly, seriously and with great dedication performed one of the most responsible duties in difficult historical times and trials for our country and people,” Vučić said.

Born in Belgrade, Milan Milutinović graduated from high school and the law faculty of the university there with a master’s degree in law. From 1969 to 1971 he was a member of the presidium of the Yugoslav Socialist Youth Union, and from 1974 to 1977 he was secretary for ideology of the city committee of the Union of Communists of Belgrade. In addition, in 1969-1974, Milutinovic was a member of the Federal Parliament of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and worked, in particular, in the Foreign Affairs Committee.

In 1977-1982, he was put in charge of the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports of Serbia, where he worked on a comprehensive reform of the education system. After leaving the ministerial post, Milutinovic took up the position of director of the National Library of Serbia and remained in it until 1987.

Milutinovic then joined the Federal Secretariat for Foreign Affairs as head of the press, information and culture sector, and in September 1989 he was sent as ambassador to Greece and for most of his stay there remained the only diplomatic representative of his country in Europe (due to the introduced in 1992, the UN embargo made it impossible to appoint new ambassadors).