Hariri court summons Lebanon journalists for contempt

AFP , Thursday 24 Apr 2014

The international court tasked with trying those charged with assassinating Lebanon's former premier Rafiq Hariri in 2005 said Thursday it had summoned two journalists and two media organisations for contempt.

"Karma Mohamed Tahsin al Khayat from Al-Jadeed TV, as well as the station's parent company New TV S.A.L., have been summoned to appear before the STL on two counts of Contempt and Obstruction of Justice," a Special Tribunal for Lebanon statement said.

"Ibrahim Mohamed Al Amin from Al Akhbar, as well as the newspaper's parent company Akhbar Beirut S.A.L., have been summoned on one count of Contempt and Obstruction of Justice," it added.

Al-Jadeed and its deputy chief Khayat, as well as Al-Akhbar and its editor-in-chief Amin, are accused of "knowingly and wilfully interfering with the administration of justice by broadcasting and/or publishing information on purported confidential witnesses".

In April last year, a list of 167 names of so-called witnesses for the Hariri trial was published by a previously unknown group identified as "Journalists for the Truth".

The group said it wanted to "unveil the corruption" of the STL.

Both Al-Akhbar and Al-Jadeed published the list.

The STL, established at Lebanon's request, seeks to try five members of the powerful Shiite movement Hezbollah for the attack that killed Hariri and 22 others on February 14, 2005, in Beirut.

Hezbollah accuses the court of being part of an "Israeli-US" plot, and has yet to hand over the suspects.

The trial opened in a suburb outside The Hague in January.

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