news Thursday, March 19, 2015 - 05:30

The News Minute | March 18, 2015 | 2:25 pm IST

The Sydney cafe where a gunman held 18 people hostage in mid-December last year will reopen on Friday, March 20 in a "discreet" public ceremony, the cafe's owners said on Wednesday.

The coffee and chocolate specialist Lindt Cafe was held in a 16-hour siege by Man Haron Monis who killed manager Tori Johnson before police stormed the cafe and shot Monis dead.

Lawyer Katrina Dawson was killed in cross fire when police burst in.

The local owners of the Swiss-owned Lindt in Sydney's Central Business District (CBD) told Xinhua news agency on Wednesday that the cafe has been refurbished with new decorations and furniture.

Two plaques commemorating the killed pair have also been placed near the main doorway.

New South Wales Premier Michael Baird will speak to staff and media shortly before the cafe officially reopens at 10am on Friday.

Meanwhile, authorities have announced that a two-week coronial inquest into the siege and the police handling of it will be held from May 25.

Sixty witnesses will be called.

It will be the second stage of a one-day hearing in January where it was determined Dawson was killed by a police bullet, or a fragment of one.

With IANS

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