Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar addressing a press conference in Islamabad on Sunday said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Army Chief Gen Raheel Sharif were briefed regarding a probe into a Dawn story on a high-level meeting.
The prime minister, army chief and Chaudhry Nisar met in Quetta the day after the police academy attack, where the interior minister shared some details regarding the probe with the PM and Chief of Army Staff.
“I shared with him [the PM] the details and recommendations. The PM asked me some questions and in principal approved the recommendations. He asked me to share them with the COAS. Ishaq Dar was also there in the meeting, so was Shahbaz Sharif.”
“We made a call and went to Army House. Not in secret. It was no late-night clandestine meeting,” Nisar clarified. “As usual, the meeting with COAS was very pleasant. There were reports of it being strained and tense… Who will contradict me and say it was not pleasant? I will not trust or accept any non-military source saying the meeting was anything but pleasant.”
The development comes after the publication of Dawn’s story “Act against militants or face international isolation, civilians tell military”, which reported details of a high level civil-military meeting discussing the issue of Pakistan’s banned outfits.
The report of the high-profile security meeting has forced the government to initiate an inquiry to identify the person responsible for its leak.
The interior minister said when the Dawn story was published, a decision was taken by the PM – the army chief was in a meeting ─ that there would be an initial inquiry.
“Because this is a high-profile probe, senior officials have to initiate this. A legal team, led by our law minister, was also complying. The Federal Investigation Agency and Islamabad police are all complying,” he said.
“After a few days, a discussion was undertaken… It is no secret that at a certain stage, I distanced myself from this investigation. But then the responsibility was given to me.”