A U.N.-backed tribunal investigating the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri is taking steps to ensure a speedy trial.
The tribunal in the Dutch town of Leidschendam began a hearing Monday to decide, among other things, how an act of terrorism should be defined and under which law - Lebanese or international.
The court hopes that clarifying legal questions now will enable it to hold a speedy trial for the suspects in the truck bombing that killed Mr. Hariri and 22 other people in Beirut on February 14, 2005.
Lebanese militant group Hezbollah has said it expects to be named as a suspect in the case - a development the group has vowed not to accept. Hezbollah quit the government of Western-backed Prime Minister Saad Hariri last month in protest at the impending indictment, forcing the government's collapse.
Saad Hariri, the son of the assassinated former leader, remains a caretaker prime minister while a Hezbollah-backed prime minister-designate, Najib Mikati, tries to form a new coalition government.