ISLAMABAD: The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), army’s public affairs wing, has withdrawn tweet of its director general posted a few days ago on ‘Dawn leaks’ that apparently expressed ‘resentment’ on the government notification on the news leak probe, ARY News reported.
According to ISPR, the tweet posted by the DG ISPR Maj. Gen Asif Ghafoor was neither against any individual nor the government. Analysts believe that the move is unprecedented by the army.
Here’s the complete ISPR statement:
“The tweet on 29 April 2017 was not aimed at any government office or person. 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. Accordingly, ISPR’s said Twitter post stands withdrawn and has become infructuous.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 Issue ‘Stands Settled’
Interior Ministry issued a media release saying Prime Minister has approved recommendations of Dawn Leaks Inquiry Committee and the issue stands settled.
The statement also says that there is a need to develop a Code of Conduct for the Print Media especially when dealing with issues relating to security of Pakistan.
The Inquiry Committee recommended that the role of Daily Dawn, Zafar Abbas and Cyrill Almeida in the case may be referred to All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) with a direction to take disciplinary action against them.
The statement said that action has already taken by the Federal Government against Senator Pervaiz Rashid is endorsed.
The Committee unanimously agreed that the then Principal Information Officer Rao Tehsin Ali had not displayed the required level of professionalism and has shown carelessness while dealing with the issue.
The Committee recommended that he may be proceeded against under the Efficiency and Discipline Rules.
The Committee also recommended removal of Mr. Tariq Fatemi from his portfolio of Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs
Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif chaired a high-level meeting with the Dawn leaks issue on top of the agenda.
COAS Gen Bajwa was accompanied by DG ISI Lt Gen Naveed Mukhtar, while Finance Minister Ishaq Dar was also present at the meeting. Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar also joined the meeting later.
The news story, highlighting alleged confrontation between the civilian government and the military at a meeting in October 2016, published by Dawn newspaper last year erupted with a storm in national politics and shortly it transformed into a news leak scandal before becoming a mainstream media fodder.
It all started when the Dawn journalist Cyril Almeida “broke confidential minutes” of a meeting among the government and military officials on ‘national action plan’ in which the civilians reportedly apprised the military of mounting international pressure of more action against armed groups.
The government on April 29 issued a notification regarding probe on the Dawn leaks, however, the DG ISPR’s tweet came to light within an hour, rejecting government notification on the matter.
Director General Inter Services Public Relation (ISPR) Major Gen Asif Ghafoor issued a brief statement in a Tweet and said that recommendation of Pakistan Army was not incorporated.
“Notification on Dawn Leak is incomplete and not in line with recommendations by the Inquiry Board,” said the military press wing. “Notification is rejected,” it stated.