Timeline: Slobodan Milosevic

Highlights of Slobodan Milosevic's career:

Aug. 20, 1941 — Born in Pozarevac, in central Serbia.

1964 — Graduates from Belgrade Law School, joins the Communist Party.

1984 — Appointed party leader in Belgrade by his friend, Ivan Stambolic, who had been promoted to head the Serbian Communist Party.

1986 — Succeeds Stambolic as party boss after Stambolic elevated to president of Serbia.

April 1987 — Delivers inflammatory speech in Kosovo to Serbs demanding protection from ethnic Albanian majority in the Serbian province. The speech catapults Milosevic to prominence.

September 1987 — Milosevic accuses Stambolic and others of anti-communist and anti-Serbian policies during a live telecast of party meeting, forcing their resignations.

1989 — Milosevic becomes president of Serbia, strips Kosovo of autonomy. More than 20 killed in protests.

1990 — Yugoslavia sends in troops to impose control. Serbia dissolves Kosovo's government.

1991 — Croatia and Slovenia declare their independence from Yugoslavia. Milosevic sends tanks to Slovenian borders, triggering a brief war that ended in Slovenia's secession. Milosevic encourages Serbs in Croatia to take up arms.

1992 — U.N.-patrolled cease-fire in Croatia takes effect in January. In March, Bosnia-Herzegovina declares its independence. Milosevic bankrolls Bosnian Serb rebellion.

1995 — Milosevic agrees to settlement of Bosnian war at U.S.-sponsored peace talks in Dayton, Ohio, with presidents of Croatia and Bosnia. NATO authorizes deploying 60,000 troops.

November-December 1996 — Milosevic allies win elections for federal parliament, but opposition coalition appears to win runoffs in most local elections, including Belgrade. Milosevic-controlled electoral commissions annul local elections, provoking nightly rallies that reach 250,000 people. Violence breaks out in late December, with dozens injured and at least one killed.

January 1997 — Milosevic concedes defeat and allows opposition to take control of several cities.

July 1997 — Prevented by constitution from seeking re-election, Milosevic has parliament name him president of Yugoslavia, comprising only the republics of Serbia and Montenegro.

February 1998 — Milosevic sends troops to crush new ethnic Albanian uprising in Kosovo.

September 1998 — U.N. Security Council adopts resolution calling for immediate cease-fire and political dialogue.

October 1998 — NATO allies authorize airstrikes against Serb military targets. Milosevic agrees to withdraw troops, allow return of refugees and 2,000 unarmed monitors to verify compliance. Attacks continue.

March 1999 — Kosovo Albanians sign peace deal calling for broad interim autonomy and 28,000 NATO troops. Serb delegation refuses and talks suspended.

March 24, 1999 — NATO airstrikes begin.

May 24, 1999 — Milosevic and four subordinates indicted by U.N. war crimes tribunal on charges of crimes against humanity — murder, deportation and persecutions — and violations of the laws and customs of war.

June 3, 1999 — Yugoslavia's government accepts a plan for U.N. administration of Kosovo and return of more than 850,000 ethnic Albanians, policed by NATO-led force.

June 9, 1999 — Yugoslav and Western generals sign the pact.

Sept. 24, 2000 — Yugoslavs vote directly for president for first time. Supporters of Milosevic challenger Vojislav Kostunica declare victory next day, but election commission says runoff needed, prompting massive protests and strikes that sweep country.

Oct. 5, 2000 — Milosevic ousted after huge mobs rampage through Belgrade, driving security forces from streets and seizing parliament, TV network, police stations.

April 1, 2001 — Milosevic arrested in his villa after 26-hour standoff with police.

June 28, 2001 — Milosevic handed over to the custody of the U.N. war crimes tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands, to face charges stemming from atrocities in Kosovo.

July 3, 2001 — Milosevic makes first court appearance and refuses to plea to charges of crimes against humanity in Kosovo. The court enters innocent plea on his behalf.

Oct. 29, 2001 — Court enters innocent plea for Milosevic on the Croatia crimes against humanity indictment.

Dec. 11, 2001 — Court enters innocent plea for Milosevic on the Bosnian genocide indictment.

Feb. 12, 2002 — Milosevic's war crimes trial opens before the U.N. tribunal.