ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s National Security Committee on Friday ruled out any "foreign conspiracy" behind the removal of Imran Khan from power through a no-trust vote in parliament.
The development comes after Khan’s repeated allegations in public rallies that a "US-instigated conspiracy" was behind his ouster for what he said pursuing an “independent” foreign policy for Pakistan.
Khan said his government had received a letter from the then Pakistani ambassador in Washington, which threatened a "regime change" in Pakistan. The US has dismissed the allegations, saying there was “absolutely no truth” in the claims.
On Friday, PM Shehbaz Sharif presided over the NSC meeting, which discussed the telegram sent by the then Pakistan ambassador in Washington after his meeting with US Under Secretary Donald Lu. The ambassador, Asad Majeed, briefed the committee on the context and content of his telegram.
“The NSC after reviewing the contents of the communication, the assessments received, and the conclusions presented by the security agencies, concludes that there has been no foreign conspiracy,” it said in a statement after the meeting.
The statement said that Majeed briefed the committee on the context and content of his telegram. “The NSC was again informed by the premier security agencies that they have found no evidence of any conspiracy,” it said.
The NSC, the statement read, after examining the contents of the communication, reaffirmed the decisions of the last meeting.
Ex-PM Khan had chaired the last NSC meeting on March 31 to discuss the telegram, which had expressed “grave concern” over the communication, terming the language used by a foreign official as “undiplomatic.”
The committee at the time concluded the communication amounted to “blatant interference” in the internal affairs of Pakistan by the country in question, which was “unacceptable under any circumstances.”
Pakistan’s foreign office later also handed over a demarche to the US as per decision of the security committee.
The telegram has since become the main tool of Khan's politics in recent days, with the former premier terming it a conspiracy to install an “imported” government in Pakistan and all other sides, including the powerful military, rejecting the notion.
During a mass rally in Lahore on Thursday night, Khan reiterated his claims and called for a snap election in the country.
He also maintained the foreign powers were not happy with him since he was raising his voice against Islamophobia on various international forums.