Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Thursday moved an adjournment motion in the National Assembly seeking discussion over the long-standing Dawn Leaks controversy.

The motion was moved a day after Pakistan Army retracted its tweet which rejected the notification issued by the Prime Minister’s Office to punish those involved in the scandal.

“On behalf of PTI parliamentary party, we the undersigned move an adjournment motion requiring suspension of normal agenda to discuss a matter of critical national importance: the Dawn Leaks issue which was referred to, as a national security breach by the interior minister and the corps commanders meeting — immediately after it came to light,” said the motion moved by PTI MNAs Asad Umar, Shafqat Mahmood and Munazza Hasan.

Demanding the inquiry report be presented in the Parliament, the PTI lawmakers upheld that the so-called ‘settlement’ of the issue raised more questions.

“The inquiry report on the issue be laid before Parliament so the issue can be discussed thoroughly and the government provide answers to serious questions raised not only by the incident itself but also by the non-transparent manner in which the issue was claimed to have been ‘resolved’.” said the motion.

On Wednesday, hours after the Pakistan Army’s media wing confirmed that the Dawn Leaks issue was settled,  PTI chairman Imran Khan reiterated his demand to make the inquiry report public.

“The whole nation now needs to know what was settled,” the PTI chief said, in a series of tweets Wednesday, following an agreement between the Army and Nawaz-led government on Dawn Leaks.

Pakistan Army on Wednesday “withdrew” a tweet sent out by Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General on April 29 which said the Prime Minister Office’s directives on the Dawn story inquiry report were “rejected”.

“The tweet on April 29, 2017 was not aimed at any government office or person,” an ISPR press release said.

 “Recommendations, as contained in Para 18 of the Inquiry Committee Report, duly approved by the prime minister, have been implemented, which has settled the Dawn leaks issue,” it added.

“Accordingly, ISPR’s said Twitter post stands withdrawn and has become infructuous.

“Pakistan Army reiterates its firm commitment and continued resolve to uphold the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and support the democratic process.”

The Dawn Leaks controversy started in October last year when Pakistan’s leading daily ‘Dawn’ in one of its stories by the name ‘Act against militants or face diplomatic isolation’ hinted at a rift between civil-military relations.

The story stirred a major controversy, resulting in columnist Cyril Almeida coming under fire from the military and government and being temporarily placed on the Exit Control List.

The Dawn story quoting official sources said that civilian government and military were not on the same page regarding actions against some specific militant groups and there was heated exchange of words between Punjab CM Shehbaz and ISI chief during a national security meeting.

Pakistan army had dismissed the story as “unfounded and planted” and called for a probe into the leak that led to the formation of an inquiry commission.

Prime Minister Office and Punjab Chief Minister also rejected the report published in the newspaper.