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PM Imran Khan repeats ‘conspiracy’ allegation despite US rejection

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WASHINGTON/ ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan has repeated his allegation of conspiracy to topple his govt despite rejection by the US State Department and the White House. While Pakistan’s security agencies have found an “assassination plan” to target Prime Minister Imran Khan, Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry said Friday.

Addressing the Islamabad Security Dialogue Friday, the premier said that the “powerful country” is supporting its ally, India. “Today, I read the statement of the British Foreign Secretary that mentioned that they cannot say anything to India as it is an independent state I don’t blame them for this support, this is our mistake,” he said.

Taking a jibe at the Leader of the opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif, he said: “Those who are preparing to get to the Prime Minister’s Office are giving interviews that my statements will antagonize America and Pakistan cannot survive without its support.”

He further accused the Opposition, saying that these leaders have sacrificed Pakistan’s economy and humiliated the country in the world because of their benefits.

Addressing the ongoing controversy regarding the “threat letter”, apparently sent by the US, the premier said that an honourable person is always respected, questioning if a country can threaten another country.”

On Thursday during a televised address to the nation, talking about the “threatening memo” that the premier claimed to have received against his government from a foreign country, he named the United States to be behind the conspiracy.

In an apparent slip of the tongue, he named “the United States…” but quickly moved on and stated that “a foreign country” had sent a “threatening memo” which was against the Pakistani nation.

PM Imran Khan said the decisions of previous politicians have led to a situation wherein no foreign country respects Pakistan. “They order us. They say that if the no-confidence motion does not become successful, there will be consequences for Pakistan.”

During a regular press briefing, White House Communications Director Kate Bedingfield categorically rejected PM Imran Khan’s allegation.

Responding to a question that the Prime Minister of Pakistan accused the US government of working to remove him from power, Bedingfield said, “absolutely no truth to that allegation”.

A day earlier, responding to a question regarding the ‘threat letter,’ the US State Department categorically rejected any kind of involvement in the no-confidence motion against PM Imran Khan.

“Allegations of US involvement in the no-trust motion and ‘threat letter’ to PM Imran Khan are baseless,” said the State Department.

Meanwhile, US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price also rejected Imran Khan’s statement that the US government is trying to oust him.

After the National Security Committee (NSC)Thursday’s meeting decided to issue a strong demarche to the country whose official communicated the “threat”.

Pakistan also summoned the US acting deputy chief of mission in Islamabad over the ‘threat letter’ and registered strong protest for the undiplomatic language used against Pakistan in the memo, local media reported.

Pakistan told the US envoy that interference in the internal affairs of Pakistan is unacceptable.

Meanwhile, the Information minister told in a Tweet that the government has decided to increase the security of the prime minister.

“Security agencies have reported that a plan to assassinate Prime Minister Imran Khan has surfaced. After these reports, the security of the prime minister has been increased as per the government’s decision,” Fawad tweeted.

It may be recalled that PTI leader Faisal Vawda had also claimed that PM Imran Khan’s life is in danger and a plan was being made to take his life.

“A plot is being hatched to assassinate Prime Minister Imran Khan as political tensions rise in the country,” the former federal minister said Wednesday in a conversation with a private television channel.

He further stated that the premier has also received a death threat.

“We have told him repeatedly to use bulletproof glass while addressing rallies […] in response, the premier had stated that when he will die when his time comes,” Vawda said. In response to a question, the former federal minister said the plot was linked to the “secretive” memo that the government had received. “There isn’t just one letter, there are several letters,” he claimed.

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