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Cipher was not returned to Foreign Ministry, special court releases detailed verdict

Court remarks uproar created by PTI over cipher damaged Pakistan’s ties with other countries

By News Desk

February 1, 2024 12:17 PM


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Judge Abual Hasnat Zulqarnain of the special court set up under the Official Secrets Act on Thursday released a detailed verdict in the US cipher case in which both former prime minister and ex-PTI chairman Imran Khan and ex-foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had been given 10-year prison terms each, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

In the decision, spreading over 77 pages, the judge said that Imran had not returned the cipher to the foreign ministry despite the fact it was obligatory on him to return it since he was the country’s prime minister.

He further said that Pakistan’s relations with friendly countries soured due to the uproar created by Imran and other PTI leaders over the cipher, of which the enemy countries took advantage. “The attitude shown by both Imran and Qureshi was unbecoming of a prime minister and a foreign minister, respectively. Both of them deliberately lied to the nation, and tried to use the cipher for their political gains,” read the verdict.

“Both of them tried to create an impression as if they were helpless in the face of the situation,” the judge wrote.    

It was also written in the decision that lawyers for the defendants were found non-serious during the case’s hearing.

Furthermore, read the verdict, both the defendants misbehaved with the state lawyers. “They threw away files,” said the judge.

The judge went on to say that 17-month-long investigation had proved that the case was not registered after a delay.  

A special court had on Tuesday handed both Imran and Qureshi 10-year prison term in the cipher case, which pertained to a diplomatic document that as per the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) was never returned by Imran Khan. The PTI, on the contrary, had said that the letter contained a threat from the USA to oust Imran as prime minister.

 

Reporter: Hashir Warraich


News Desk


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