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Milo Djukanovic

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Milo Đukanović (right) listens to William Cohen

Milo Đukanović (born February 15, 1962 in Niksic) is the current Prime Minister of the state of Montenegro, within the state union of Serbia and Montenegro. He has served in this role since November 26, 2002, after resigning the position of president the previous day. He had previously served as Montenegrin prime minister between 1991 and 1997. There are ongoing investigations by the Italian authorities relating to Đukanović's possible involvement in people trafficking, as well as cigarette smuggling.

Đukanović was born in Nikšić. In his youth, he became involved with the League of Communists of Yugoslavia (in what was then the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia), before joining the Central Committee of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia in 1979.

In 1991, at the age of 29, he rose to the post of Montenegrin prime minister for the first time, with the support of former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milošević. At this time, he was the youngest prime minister in Europe.

In 1996, he began to fall out with Milošević, publicly blasting him in an interview. At that time Milosevic was facing harsh criticism in Serbia with student protests in the Winter of 1996/1997. This was in stark contrast to the stance of Momir Bulatović who was then both president of Montenenegro and the pro-Milošević Democratic Party of Socialists. Bulatović's protg wrested control of the party and the republic from his mentor. Đukanović won a narrow, but majority support in the DPS party and cleansed the party of pro-Bulatović supporters while taking over the state-controlled media and the security apparatus with the help of his DPS ally Vukašin Maraš.

In July of 1997, Đukanović contested Bulatović for the position of president of Montenegro. In the first round of the elections, Đukanović lagged by 2000 votes behind Bulatović (a staunch ally of Slobodan Milosević). Three of the other candidates, who received 11,000 votes, gave support to Bulatović for the second round. However, in a historic second round vote seen as the most significant electoral victory in Montenegro's democratic history, Đukanović won the elections by a margin of five thousand, after assembling 29,000 more votes than in the first round.

Since the downfall of Milošević, he has struggled with Serbia over the issue of Montenegrin independence. His pro-independence policy resulted in a compromise some see as having been imposed" by the European Union and its foreign policy chief Javier Solana, with the creation of the new state union of Serbia and Montenegro (replacing the two-republic Federal Yugoslavia), but this also caused fallout with elements of his supporters who wanted him to push for full independence.sr:Мило Ђукановић

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