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Govt not to make Dawn Leaks report public: sources

ISLAMABAD: The government decided on Tuesday to not make the Dawn Leaks report public for now, according to sources.

The decision was made during an important consultative session chaired by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif which was attended by PM’s close aides and advisers.

The participants also discussed that adequate actions have been taken based on the recommendations present in paragraph 18 of the report.

The meeting expressed reservations over the rejection of the PM House order, based on the report’s recommendations, through a tweet. The prime minister also expressed his disappointment over the tweet.

The session asked the participants to share their reservations, if any, with the government on the matter.

Participants shared a united stance that all recommendations of the report will be implemented in letter and spirit.

All points of the recommendations have been implemented, the meeting concluded, and that if there is any other recommendation which needs to be implemented then participants be informed accordingly.

Sources said another consultative meeting is likely to be held in a few days and other important officials will also be included. 

Read more: Nisar questions 'commotion' over Dawn Leaks, says Interior Ministry yet to issue notification

How did it start?
An English-language daily, Dawn, had published the story on October 6, last year, in which journalist Cyril Almeida had written about an alleged civil-military rift during a National Security Committee (NSC) meeting over the issue of tackling jihadi outfits.

The story stirred a major controversy last year, resulting in resignation of Information Minister Pervaiz Rasheed and Almeida coming under fire.

An inquiry committee was formed to probe the matter, which then in its report had placed blame on Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Tariq Fatemi and Principal Information Officer at the Press Information Department Rao Tehsin, sources had earlier told Geo News.

PM Office order
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif approved on Saturday the recommendations of the Dawn leaks Inquiry committee, withdrawing the portfolio of Foreign Affairs from his Special Assistant Tariq Fatemi, according to an order of PM Office.

Read more: PM withdraws Tariq Fatemi’s portfolio, notification issued

The executive said that Rao Tehsin Ali, the principal information officer at the Information Ministry, would also be sanctioned, adding the editor of Dawn Newspaper, Zaffar Abbas, and reporter Cyril Almeida will be referred to the All Pakistan Newspaper Association (APNS) “for necessary disciplinary action.”

In response to this, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said that PM Office does not have the right to issue a notification; only Interior Ministry can issue it. “A non-issue has been turned into an issue, he remarked.

Army’s reaction
Reacting to the statement, the Pakistan Army rejected and said it was incomplete and not in line with the recommendations by the inquiry board.

The Army announced the rejection in a tweet sent out by DG ISPR Major-General Asif Ghafoor from his official account: “Notification on Dawn Leak is incomplete and not in line with recommendations by the Inquiry Board. Notification is rejected.”

Read more: Pakistan Army rejects govt notification on Dawn Leaks

Tariq Fatemi, Rao Tehsin held accountable
Later, the federal cabinet division issued a notification, ordering the withdrawal of the portfolio of Foreign Affairs from the Prime Minister’s Special Assistant Tariq Fatemi.

“In terms of rule 4(6) of the Rules of Business, 1973, the Prime Minister has been pleased to withdraw the portfolio of Foreign Affairs, with immediate effect, from Mr Tariq Fatemi, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister with the status of Minister of State,” the notification read.

Moreover, Establishment Division issued a notification, transferring Principal Information Officer Press Information Department Rao Tehsin and asking him to report to the Division immediately.

Fatemi, Tehsin react
After the notification, Rao Tehsin Ali said that he will challenge the Dawn Leaks inquiry commission recommendations in court, which said that he “would be proceeded against under the E&D rules 1973 on the charges based on the report findings”.

On May 2, Tariq Fatemi denied all allegations regarding his role in the Dawn Leaks saga.

"As a fellow member of the Foreign Service family, I reject recent allegations, insinuations and innuendos. Such suggestions are particularly hurtful to someone who has served Pakistan for nearly five decades with honour and integrity," wrote the senior diplomat in the letter addressed to all officers of the Foreign Affairs Ministry at headquarters and Pakistan Missions abroad.

Read more: Dawn Leaks: Fatemi rejects allegations in letter to colleagues

PM meets with COAS: sources
On May 6, Nawaz Sharif met with Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa and both discussed issues pertaining to Dawn Leaks, security and border situation..

Read more: PM Nawaz meets COAS, Dawn Leaks among other issues discussed: sources

PM Nawaz and COAS agreed that the issues surrounding Dawn Leaks would be dealt with amicably.

Sources further said that the meeting was held upon PM Nawaz's wish. (Geo News)

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