The Judges Walid Akoum, Janet Nosworthy, David Re, Micheline Braidy and Nicola Lettier (LtoR) in the courtroom of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon in The Hague, The Netherlands, January 16 , 2014. REUTERS/Toussaint Kluiters/United Photos/POOL
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The long-awaited trial of five members of Hezbollah accused of complicity in the killing of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri will resume Wednesday at the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, as the court's top administrator urged the Lebanese to watch the trial and make up their own minds about its aims.The U.N.-backed tribunal indicted four members of Hezbollah in connection with the bombing, and began their trial in absentia in January.The court decided to suspend the trial for four months while Merhi's lawyers prepared his defense.Mundis said Lebanon had an obligation to arrest all five suspects despite the fact that their trial in absentia has begun.Court documents show that Hezbollah has actively barred Lebanese investigators working with the STL from gaining access to Merhi's home, raising questions about Lebanon's ability to uphold its obligations to The Hague-based court.The court argues that the reports aimed at intimidating witnesses and undermining confidence in the court's work.The tribunal's opponents say the STL has deviated from its core mandate and is attacking freedom of the press in Lebanon.
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