Memogate: We are ready to face legal action, says Farahnaz Ispahani

Ambassador Haqqani's wife denies allegations of her husband's involvement in the memo scandal, slams Mansoor Ijaz.

Express November 21, 2011

ISLAMABAD: Media Adviser to the President Farahnaz Ispahani, who is also the wife of Pakistan's Ambassador to the US Husain Haqqani, said on Monday that the pair is ready to face legal action regarding the memo controversy.

Talking to the media outside the Supreme Court, Ispahani raised doubts over the credibility of the Pakistani American businessman Mansoor Ijaz who claims that Haqqani asked him to deliver the memo to Adm Mike Mullen in May this year.

"He is a foreign national who is blaming us and attacking Pakistan’s democracy," Ispahani told reporters outside the apex court building in Islamabad.

She denied the allegations regarding the controversial memo and said the pair is ready for Pakistani and American courts because they have nothing to hide.

"I am a worker of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP)," she said. "When the president and prime minister guide us to take a legal option, we will do so," she added.

She also said that if the top leadership of her party permits it, the pair will take Ijaz to court for libel.

Ijaz hit out at the ambassador on challenging the authenticity of the memo and ruled out any missing links in the authenticity chain. He said that he was an “ultra wealthy” individual who handles his own investments and would sue anyone for slandering against him using the best of lawyers from London, New York and Switzerland.

Local media reports implicated Haqqani in a memo allegedly sent from Zardari to Mullen, then America’s top military officer, seeking to curtail Pakistan’s military shortly after it was humiliated by the bin Laden killing.

Zardari reportedly feared that the military might seize power in a bid to limit the hugely damaging fallout in Pakistan after Navy SEALs killed bin Laden in the garrison city of Abbottabad on May 2.

The alleged memo, released last month by Ijaz, said that a “new national security team” in Pakistan — with US support — could end ties between Pakistani intelligence and militants.

Haqqani strongly denied his role in drafting the memo and offered to face any inquiry, a source close to the ambassador told The Express Tribune. He told the president he is ready to answer questions raised by the military, the source added.

“I heard that certain elements in the military are accusing me of working against Pakistan’s interests. I challenge them to say this on my face,” the source quoted Haqqani as telling the president.

Having purportedly ‘convinced’ the president of his alibi on the memo controversy, Pakistan’s ambassador to US Hussain Haqqani will now face the troika – the president, the prime minister, and the army chief.

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Yasir | 8 years ago | Reply | Recommend

This is undoubtedly a conspiracy and an Independent Commission, an oxymoron statement at that, could determine and publicly present their findings within 15 days. There is sufficient evidence that cannot be destroyed electronically and therefore convictions are possible. Mrs. Haqqani has stated that they will sue Mansoor Ijaz for slander and defamation. She is very right that this person should be given a lesson so that he could never dare again to move his nefarious designs again. But I suggest here to civilian Govt of Pakistan take strong action against Mansoor Ijaz for he tried to pit military against democracy. I am sure soon the cat will be out of bag and this conspiracy will die its own death. Hussain Haqqani is ready to surrender his laptop and black berry but why not Mansoor Ijaz. I am sure Hussain Haqqani is innocent and will be cleared from all the charges. This person should be grilled thoroughly because he is posing severe threats to democracy.

Tipu Sultan | 8 years ago | Reply | Recommend

She looks very relaxed and someone trustworthy

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