Monday Apr 04, 2022
ISLAMABAD: Amid controversy surrounding the much-talked-about “threat letter”, senior journalist and analyst Hamid Mir revealed that the letter flashed by the premier on March 27 at a PTI rally is not the one he received from a Pakistani diplomat.
Speaking on a Geo News Special Transmission for the no-confidence motion on Sunday, Mir said that it [the letter] was actually a diplomatic cable which was re-written by the people in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Quoting sources, he said the letter was not original as some material was added to it. The words added were not part of the diplomatic communication, the sources told him.
“There is an element of forgery in the letter,” Mir told participants of the TV programme, adding that he had already reported on Saturday that nothing came out of an investigation into the letter. Sources close to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, however, denied the letter had been tampered with.
However, it was earlier reported that sources have told Mir that the security establishment had conveyed to the premier that "no such evidence of the conspiracy has been found."
On March 27, in a public rally, PM Imran revealed that "foreign elements" are involved in the attempts to topple his government and said, "some of our own people" are being used in this regard.
The premier, while flashing a letter before the public, said that he has "written evidence" that "money has been pouring in from abroad," while "some of our people are being used to topple the government."
He said that for months, "plotting and planning is being carried out to influence the foreign policy of Pakistan from outside".
Mir said during Geo News programme Naya Pakistan that the PM keeps on addressing the media, the public and his party and even tried to sell the alleged letter to the security establishment.
However, sources told the journalists that the establishment, in return, conveyed to the government that no evidence of any foreign government sponsoring the no-confidence motion exists and asked the political leadership to "furnish the evidence if they have any."
The development came after the National Security Committee (NSC) decided to issue a strong demarche to the country whose official communicated the "threat" a day after premier Imran Khan shared the 'threat letter' with military leadership and the federal cabinet.
The controversy arose after premier Imran, in his speech at a public rally on Sunday, claimed that there was a "foreign-funded plot" being hatched against his government. He showed a letter, but without divulging its contents, as evidence of the existence of the conspiracy aimed at toppling his government. Imran insisted that efforts were being made to seek his ouster since he pursued an "independent" foreign policy.
On March 30, the premier had shared the "threat letter" he talked of with cabinet members in an emergency meeting. The meeting was not attended by PTI's two major allies — MQM-P and Balochistan Awami Party (BAP).
Meanwhile, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry also invited a group of journalists to meet PM Imran Khan where selected details of the letter were shared with them.
The premier had said that a Pakistani envoy posted in a foreign country wrote the memo that he flashed on March 27 at a PTI rally and termed it "threatening", sources told Geo News.
The premier, while interacting with journalists, said the envoy had sent the letter to Pakistan after he met an official of a foreign country, according to sources.
PM Imran Khan said the memo was shared with the military leadership and mentioned that the tone used in the cable was "threatening.”
The prime minister said the memo would be shared with parliamentarians during an in-camera session, but noted that the name of the country that "threatened" Pakistan could not be shared — as national security laws are applicable.
Meanwhile, Speaker of the National Assembly Asad Qaiser took to his Twitter handle and said that if the Parliamentary leaders from the government and Opposition sides agree, the issue of the “sensitive letter” can be discussed at an in-camera meeting of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security.
Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Asad Umar, who attended the briefing, according to sources, told the journalists that the memo mentions that if the no-confidence motion passes, everything will be forgiven for Pakistan.
Umar further said that the letter mentions that "in case of its failure, the problems for Pakistan will increase."
— Thumbnail image of senior journalist and analyst Hamid Mir is a file photo from AFP