As the audios of high-profile personalities continue to get leaked, a sound bite of former prime minister Imran Khan allegedly telling his then-principal secretary Azam Khan to “play” with the US cypher has come to the fore.
In the audio allegedly featuring Khan, he could be heard talking about the cypher which he — time and again — has claimed mentions the “threat” to remove his government.
Khan allegedly told Azam in the audio — the date of which cannot be ascertained at the moment — that “let’s just play” with the cypher and not mention America’s name.
In response, Azam tells Khan a whole scheme of how to use the cypher to forward PTI’s political agenda — and in that, he also suggests using Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood so the matter can be highlighted at a “bureaucratic level”.
PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry responded to the development, saying that “the new leaks only confirm the attempt to hide the US cable from the [then] prime minister [Imran Khan]”.
Imran Khan: Ok, so now let’s just play with it. We don’t need to name America. We will say that the date was already there.
Azam Khan: Sir, I was thinking…that we should hold a meeting on this cypher issue. If you might remember, the ambassador mentioned at the last of the letter that we should issue a demarche. If you still don’t want to issue a demarche, because I got to thinking late last night, how can we cover this? Let’s call a meeting of Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Foreign Secretary (Sohail Mahmood). There, we will ask Shah Mahmood Qureshi to read out the letter. So whatever he will tell us, I will type it down and convert it into [meeting] minutes that the foreign minister said this and the foreign secretary said this. After this, we will write the analysis as we deem fit, so it becomes part of the record. In the analysis, we will say that the language used [in the letter] — in line with diplomatic norms — is termed a threat. See, the minutes are in my hand, we can draft them according to our wishes.
Imran Khan: So whom should we call in this meeting? Shah Mahmood, you (Azam), I (Imran), and Sohail.
Azam Khan: [Yes,] that’s it.
Imran Khan: Alright then, let’s hold this meeting tomorrow.
Azam Khan: [So see, if we do this] then things will come on record. Right now, this is consulate photo state [sic] and when he will read them out, I will copy them easily so it will become part of the record. You should also call the foreign secretary so that this thing can be highlighted at the bureaucratic level, not just the political one. You understand what I’m saying.
Imran Khan: So did the ambassador write it himself?
Azam Khan: If we did not get a copy, then how did they take this out?
Imran Khan: This was raised from here. But anyhow, let’s make it a foreign conspiracy.
More to follow…