No foreign conspiracy found in cipher issue: Hina Khar

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ISLAMABAD:Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar Friday said National Security Committee of the Cabinet was informed by the premier security agencies that no foreign conspiracy was found after reviewing the cipher sent by Pakistan’s former ambassador to the United States Asad Majeed. In an interview to a private television, she said an unnecessary and unprecedented hue and cry was raised and political colour was given to the issue of cipher from the Pakistani diplomat. After discussing the cipher of Pakistan’s former ambassador, the National Security Committee in a previous meeting asked for issuance of a strong demarche to the country in question, both in Islamabad and the country’s capital through proper diplomatic channel keeping in view the diplomatic norms, she explained. The demarche was sent to determine whether the position taken in the meeting by the US official was of an individual or of the government, she added. She agreed that according to the cipher, undiplomatic language was used in the communication held with the US official. The challenge in this issue was the disinformation with which this issue was amplified, she added. She underlined the need for quiet and effective diplomacy in the interest of the country and not in the interest of a particular individual. She said envoy Asad Majeed explained the content and context of the cipher to the Prime Minister, federal ministers and armed services chiefs during the security committee meeting held on Friday. The minister said Foreign Office was politicised in the issue of cipher and this should be stopped. “The issue of cipher is overextended,” she said adding the situation was unusual but not unprecedented. She said as foreign minister in the past, she heard use of more harsh language during talks. She was of the view that the issue should not be pursued further and the resources should be spent on countering the immense diplomatic and economic challenges being faced by the country. Meanwhile, former foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi in a statement said that the National Security Committee reconfirmed that there was political interference in Pakistan’s affairs.

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