Cypher Drama “pre-planned” conspiracy of ex-PM: Azam Khan

Azam Khan

ISLAMABAD: Principal secretary to the former prime minister, Azam Khan on Wednesday claimed that the ex-premier had “pre-planned” the US cypher drama to gain public sympathies.

Azam Khan, who had earlier been “missing” since last month, “recorded” a statement, under CrPC 164 before a magistrate at an undisclosed location, according to sources.

Terming the US cypher a conspiracy used by the ex-PM to “manipulate a narrative against the establishment and opposition” , the former bureaucrat, in his confession, said when he provided the ex-premier with the cypher, he was “euphoric” and termed the language as a “US blunder”.

The former minister then said, according to Azam, that the cable could be used for “creating a narrative against establishment and opposition”.

Per the confession, Khan also told Azam that the cypher could be used to divert the public’s attention towards “foreign involvement” in the opposition’s no-confidence motion.

The ex-premier told him [Azam] he would display the cypher in front of the public and “twist the narrative: a foreign conspiracy is being hatched in collusion with local partners and play [the] victim card”.

When Azam, according to the confession, told Imran Khan that the cypher was a secret document and its content could not be disclosed before the public, the then-premier suggested a strategy.

He said that Imran called a meeting — which included then-foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and then-foreign secretary Sohail Mahmood — who would then tell him the minutes of the meeting as the PTI chief had lost the original copy of the cable.

The confession mentioned that the then-premier decided to call special meetings of the cabinet and the National Security Division to discuss the cypher and note down the minutes of the meetings.

However, he mentioned that till the time he was Imran’s principal secretary, the cypher was not returned to the Prime Minister’s Office as Imran had lost the original document.

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