David Whittle on Tue, 6 Jul 1999 14:35:14 +0100

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Syndicate: Bambipark

Hi All.

In response to Inke's Query...


>From Yesterday's Guardian (UK)


Milosevic's son unveils

Family business: Image as tyrants gets a

Rory Carroll in Pozarevac
Monday July 5, 1999

The son of Slobodan Milosevic surfaced from
months of hiding last night to unveil the latest
venture in the family's business empire:

Speculation that Marko Milosevic had fled abroad
ended when he opened Serbia's first recreational
theme park.

The Yugoslav president's son spent the past six
weeks hammering and painting to ensure that the
site would be ready for children needing to
recover from Nato's bombing, workers claimed.

The president and his wife Mirna made a rare trip
outside the capital Belgrade to visit Bambipark
secretly last night, a security guard said.

The park was built on one and a half hectares of
wasteground in the suburbs of Pozarevac, the
president's birthplace, 40 miles east of the

The bouncy castle, four basketball courts,
skateboard ramps, miniature pond and pirate ship
left the presidential couple beaming with
approval, said the security guard.

State-controlled television channels were invited
to film local children gazing at the newly laid
grass and the 30cm fences around the attractions.

Marko Milosevic's privately owned
import-export company, Madona, built the park
with the state-owned biscuit-making company,

A Greek diplomat in Belgrade has accused him of
using his father's authority to launder money
through his Pozarevac ventures.

Marko, who is in his mid-20s, said that the park
represented "the proof of care for the young
generations". The entrance fee of 10 dinars (30p)
includes nannies to look after infants while their
parents drink at the well-stocked bar.

Staff declined to reveal the price of drinks and of
renting skateboards and inline skates. Several
dozen uniformed police patrolled the complex, but
soldiers and heavy weaponry were absent.

Marko changed the site's name of Bambiland after
the Nato bombing to avoid using a word of
non-Serbian origin.

Workers were hammering, painting and sweeping
as 5,000 revellers started to arrive. Government
Mercedes and Land-Rovers were parked alongside
battered Yugo cars. Loudspeakers blasted
traditional music, but the presidential couple did
not appear.

The park's opening date of May 20 was postponed
by the bombing, but Marko was on site every day
encouraging workmen to give Serbia's children
something to look forward to, said Sasa Lazic, the
technical director.

"We managed to do most of it in 16 days, working
24 hours a day. It was tough but we made it," Mr
Lazic said. Asked about the president's visit, he
said: "I've no idea if he came. How should I know?"

The park has an infant zone and an "extreme
sports" zone for adolescents. A swimming pool is
to be added next year, and the site is expected to
double in size within three years.

Aleksander Vasiljevic, 20, a bodyguard, said:
"Marko worked very hard here. He did it for the

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