Manama: Kuwait’s public prosecution on Tuesday referred 26 defendants, including one Iranian national, for trial over the possession of weapons, ammunition and explosives and espionage for Iran and Lebanon’s Hezbollah group.

The prosecution said that 23 people would be remanded in custody and that the other three, still at large, would be tried in absentia.

It said that 24 defendants faced charges of engaging in acts likely to undermine the unity and safety of Kuwait and of intelligence with Iran and Lebanese group Hezbollah.

The espionage activities included perpetrating antagonistic acts against Kuwait by smuggling explosives, machine gun, firearms, ammunition and spying devices.

The prosecution added that 22 defendants received paramilitary training on using explosives, weapons and ammunition for illegal purposes. They were also charged with the illegal possession of explosives, machine guns and firearms.

One defendant was charged with hiding a machine gun, firearms and ammunitions and their illegal possession, while 11 were charged with illegally possessing communication devices.

The prosecution said that several defendants would be tried for joining Hezbollah, a group that aims to spread principles that undermine the existing regime and take over the social and economic systems through the use of force. They were also charged with assisting in the training of other defendants on the use of explosives and weapons.

The court will decide on the date of the trail, the public prosecution said.

Kuwait last month said it broke up a terror cell and seized large amounts of weapons, ammunition and explosives. Officials linked the cell to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard and Hezbollah.