Monday, April 04, 2022
ISLAMABAD: Hours after the National Assembly deputy speaker ‘trashed’ the Opposition’s no-confidence motion on Sunday, Prime Minister Imran Khan disclosed the name of the US diplomat who had allegedly sent the “threat letter” to Pakistan.
During a meeting with ex-lawmakers, PM Imran Khan, who seemed much calmer and more confident after the proceedings of the day, revealed that the threatening message that was received from the US was sent by its Assistant Secretary of State for the South and Central Asian Affairs Donald Lu.
He was quoted as saying that during a meeting between Lu and Pakistan's Ambassador Asad Majeed, note-takers from both sides were present and minutes of the meeting were released after the meeting ended.
Lu, who is currently visiting India, in an interview with Hindustan Times, was questioned regarding the “threatening message” controversy; however, he denied responding to the allegations of PM Imran Khan, The News reported.
The top US official had said that the US is closely monitoring the situation in Pakistan and “we respect and support Pakistan’s constitutional process and the rule of law.”
On March 31, PM Imran Khan claimed to have received a threat letter against his government from a foreign country. He named the United States to be behind the conspiracy.
In an apparent slip of the tongue, he named "the United States..." but quickly moved on and stated that "a foreign country" had sent a "threatening memo" which was against the Pakistani nation.
However, the US State Department and White House together spurned Imran Khan’s allegation in which he had held foreign powers responsible for attempting to topple his government, Geo News reported.
The White House responded after PM’s speech, in which he named the US government over the no-trust motion against him.
During a regular press briefing, White House Communications Director Kate Bedingfield categorically rejected PM Imran Khan’s allegation.
Responding to a question that the Prime Minister of Pakistan accused the US government of working to remove him from power, Bedingfield said, "absolutely no truth to that allegation".
Lu became Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs on September 15, 2021. Prior to this assignment, Assistant Secretary Lu served as the US Ambassador to the Kyrgyz Republic from 2018 to 2021 and the US Ambassador to the Republic of Albania from 2015-2018.
Before his posting in Albania, Assistant Secretary Lu worked on the Ebola crisis in West Africa as the Deputy Coordinator for Ebola Response in the Department of State.
Lu is a Foreign Service Officer with more than 30 years of US government service. He served as Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) in India (2010-2013), Chargé d’Affaires (2009-2010) and DCM (2007-2009) in Azerbaijan, and as DCM in Kyrgyzstan (2003-2006).
Earlier in his career he was assigned as Deputy Director in the Office of Central Asian and South Caucasus Affairs, Bureau of European Affairs (2001-2003), Special Assistant to the Ambassador for the Newly Independent States in the Office of the Secretary of State (2000-2001), Political Officer in New Delhi, India (1997-2000), Special Assistant to the Ambassador in New Delhi, India (1996-1997), Consular Officer in Tbilisi, Georgia (1994-1996), and Political Officer in Peshawar, Pakistan (1992-1994).
As a Peace Corps volunteer in Sierra Leone, West Africa from 1988-1990, he helped to restore hand-dug water wells and to teach health education and latrine construction.
Thumbnail image of Assistant Secretary of State for the South and Central Asian Affairs Donald Lu. — US State Department