Friday September 22, 2023

Didn't do anything to harm national security, says SM Qureshi over audio leaks probe

PTI leaders Shibli Faraz, Fawad Chaudhry react to federal cabinet's decision to probe alleged audio leaks

By Web Desk
October 02, 2022
(Left to right) Picture collage of PTI leaders Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Shibli Faraz and Fawad Chaudhry. — Twitter/PID/File
(Left to right) Picture collage of PTI leaders Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Shibli Faraz and Fawad Chaudhry. — Twitter/PID/File

ISLAMABAD: As the government decided to launch an inquiry into the audio leaks allegedly featuring a conversation between PTI Chairman Imran Khan and other party leaders about the US cypher,  PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that "we didn't do anything to harm the national security."

The statement comes as a reaction to the federal cabinet's decision to take legal action against the former prime minister in line with the alleged audio leaks.

Qureshi, while addressing a press conference in Multan, said that it has been proved in the cabinet summary that the US cypher is a reality and the government has accepted their stance on it. 

“The government is in a frenzy,” the PTI leader said, adding the PTI was not afraid of an investigation.

'Date of cypher says it all'

Meanwhile, sharing a copy of the summary prepared by the sub-committee of the cabinet, Fawad Chaudhry pointed out the date of the cypher received by the then government and said that he hoped that PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz “would not change her position on cypher investigation from the independent commission”.

“The date of cypher says it all,” wrote Fawad Chaudhry.

'Cipher is a reality'

On his part, PTI leader Shibli Faraz said, “the cypher is a reality.”

He maintained that PTI’s government shared it with the then National Assembly speaker and the chief justice of Pakistan, among others.

Criticising the coalition government, he said, “Current govt is the result of its contents.”

“What is the discussion about? Is it to divert the attn from tanking economy or smoke screen Dar’s & Maryum NRO?” he asked.

Cabinet greenlights inquiry against Imran Khan

Earlier in the day, the federal cabinet formally approved the decision to launch legal action against Khan over his recent alleged audio leaks about the US cypher.

Khan, Asad Umar, and then-principle secretary Azam Khan could allegedly be heard discussing the US cypher and how to use it in their interest, in the two audio leaks that surfaced as a shocking revelation.

In the first audio leak that emerged Wednesday (September 28), Khan was heard directing Azam to "just play" with the cypher, and responding to this, the latter advised the ex-premier that they can fake the minutes of a meeting with Qureshi and foreign secretary Sohail Mehmood to bring the cypher on record.

On September 30, the federal cabinet took notice of the matter and constituted a committee to probe the contents of the audio leaks. The committee recommended legal action over the audio leaks purportedly featuring Khan, Azam, and others on October 1. Meanwhile, a summary comprising the body's recommendations was presented before the cabinet.

“This is a matter of national security, which has serious implications for national interests and a legal action in this regard is vital,” recommended the cabinet committee.

The federal cabinet approved the summary through circulation. The probe into the US cypher and the audios allegedly featuring Imran Khan and others will be tasked to the FIA.