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Fifth Hezbollah member who was indicted in the assassination of former Lebanese PM Rafik Hariri

The Special Tribunal for Lebanon probing the 2005 murder of former Premier Rafik Hariri on Tuesday will hold a preliminary hearing on adding Hezbollah member Hassan Habib Merhi to the trial of the four other suspects in the assassination set to begin Thursday.

“The Trial Chamber will hold a hearing on Tuesday 14 January 2014 to hear preliminary submissions from the Prosecution and counsel for Hassan Habib Merhi on the possible joinder of the case against Mr. Merhi with the Ayyash et al. case,” a statement issued by the Tribunal said Monday.

“The hearing which will commence at 11:30 [CET time] will be held in public, but the judges may decide to go into closed session if confidential matters need to be discussed.”

The Special Tribunal for Lebanon’s trial of the four Hezbollah suspects originally indicted for the 2005 assassination of former Premier Rafik Hariri will begin on Thursday January 16.

In June 2012 the UN-backed court indicted four Hezbollah members—Mustafa Badreddine, 52, Salim Ayyash, 49, Hussein Anaissi, 39, and Assad Sabra, 36—for Hariri’s February 14, 2005 murder.

Two years later, the tribunal filed a new indictment in the case, charging Hezbollah supporter Merhi with conspiracy and serving as an accomplice to the assassination.

From top left, President Judge David Baragwanath, Registrar Daryl Mundis, Head of Defence Office François Roux, Prosecutor Norman Farrell. From bottom left, Trial chamber alternate Judge Walid Akoum, Trial chamber Judge Micheline Braidi, Appeals chamber Judge Afif Chamseddine and Vice-president Judge Ralph Riachi.
Key figures of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon that will be involved in the trial of the suspects in the murder of former PM Rafik Hariri who was assassinated on February 14, 2005 in downtown Beirut. From top left, President Judge David Baragwanath, Registrar Daryl Mundis, Head of Defence Office François Roux, Prosecutor Norman Farrell. From bottom left, Trial chamber alternate Judge Walid Akoum, Trial chamber Judge Micheline Braidi, Appeals chamber Judge Afif Chamseddine and Vice-president Judge Ralph Riachi.
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