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'Complete falsehood': Donald Lu rubbishes Imran Khan's cipher ‘conspiracy theory' – Prime Time News24



Donald Lu, the US Assistant Secretary of State, has but once more rejected former prime minister Imran Khan’s allegations that US engineered his ouster from energy by supporting the then opposition’s no-confidence movement in April 2022.

Testifying earlier than a Congressional panel on Wednesday, the highest US diplomat stated: “I wanna be very clear on this level [that] this conspiracy idea is a lie [and ] it’s a full falsehood.”

The listening to titled ‘Pakistan After the elections: Analyzing the way forward for Democracy in Pakistan and the US Pakistan relationship,’ was introduced by the Home International Affairs Subcommittee the place the assistant secretary was the important thing witness.

When requested concerning the allegations of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) founder, the US assistant secretary stated he seen the media studies concerning the alleged leaked cipher that Khan claimed contained the menace issued by Lu in a gathering with then-Pakistan’s ambassador Asad Majeed in Washington in 2022 days earlier than the ouster of the PTI-led authorities.

“At no level does it accuse the USA authorities or me personally of taking steps towards Imran Khan,” he added.

Furthermore, the US diplomat stated then Pakistan’s envoy to Washington Asad Majeed additionally testified to his authorities that there was no conspiracy.

“We respect the sovereignty of Pakistan, we respect the precept that Pakistani individuals ought to be the one ones to decide on their chief by democratic course of,” he remarked.

The cipher controversy first emerged on March 27, 2022, when Khan — lower than a month earlier than his ouster in April 2022 — whereas addressing a public rally waved a letter earlier than the group, claiming that it was a cipher from a overseas nation that had conspired along with his political rivals to have PTI authorities overthrown.

He didn’t reveal the contents of the letter nor did he point out the title of the nation it got here from. However a couple of days later, he accused the USA of conspiring towards him and alleged that Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Affairs Donald Lu had sought his removing.

The cipher was despatched by then Pakistan’s ambassador to US Asad Majeed.

US calls for probe into rigging allegations

Talking concerning the February 8 normal election, the assistant secretary referred to as for an investigation into the electoral fraud claims, saying that the US is intently monitoring the probe into the rigging allegations.

He additionally talked about “undue restrictions on freedom of expression, and peaceable meeting” in the course of the February 8 polls.

“We condemn the electoral violence and restrictions on human and basic rights and restriction on web companies,” the US diplomat added.

Lu stated the US wished the Election Fee of Pakistan (ECP) to carry these accountable concerned within the election rigging, saying they’d encourage the Pakistani authorities and the ballot authority to make the method clear.

He stated greater than 5,000 impartial election observers had been within the subject to watch the elections in Pakistan and their “organisations’ conclusion was that the conduct of the election was largely aggressive and orderly whereas noting some irregularities within the completion of the outcomes”.

Terming Pakistan an necessary companion of the US, the assistant secretary stated Washington shared dedication to strengthening Pakistan’s democratic establishment, supporting the US-Pakistan Inexperienced Alliance framework, and cooperating to counter threats from teams like al Qaeda and Daesh.

‘Pakistan dealing with mounting debt problem’

Commenting on the nation’s financial scenario, the highest diplomat instructed the Congress committee that Pakistan is dealing with a mounting debt problem and this yr almost 70% of the federal authorities’s income is predicted to go to fee to service this large debt.

“Pakistan wants financial reforms and personal sector-led funding to ship financial progress for the individuals and never dig their authorities deeper into debt,” he added.

“Pakistani individuals deserve a rustic that’s peaceable, democratic and affluent [and] we’re working very day to help that imaginative and prescient.”

On bilateral ties between the 2 international locations, Lu stated the US is at “inflection level” in its relationship with Pakistan.

He defined that Afghanistan has been in battle for 40 years and Pakistan caught up in that battle too.

“The tip of the struggle in Afghanistan gives us a possibility to have a relationship with Pakistan on its time period,” the assistant secretary stated.

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