Memogate: Mullen spokesman `never met Ijaz`

Husain Haqqani has stuck to his stance that he had nothing to do with the controversial memo sent to Mike Mullen.

Last Updated: Nov 22, 2011, 00:38 AM IST

Washington: Amid a controversy over a secret
memo sent to the then US military chief to prevent a possible
military coup in Pakistan, the spokesperson of Admiral Mike
Mullen said that the former top general never met the
Pak-American businessman Mansoor Ijaz and does not know him.

Asserting that the Admiral did not take the alleged
secret memorandum seriously as it was "not signed", there was
no indication that it was coming from the Pakistan President
and said, the contents of the said letter were not reliable
and authenticated.

"I am not going to speak to Gen (James) Jones (former
National Security Advisor) participation in it and if he is
speaking that is certainly his account. I have said this
before and am saying again today. Nothing about that letter
had the imprimatur on the Pakistani Government.

It was not signed. And the contents of it Admiral Mullen
did not find credible. So he took no action on it," Pentagon
spokesman, Navy Capt John Kirby, told reporters during an off
camera gaggle.

"He (Mullen) knew who the third party was who was giving
it (this memo) to him. He does not know Mr Ijaz. He never
communicated with Mr Ijaz. He did not know that Ijaz was the
author of this alleged memo.

He simply got the memo from a third party, read it and
decided to do nothing with it because he did not find it at
all credible," Kirby said.

Kirby as the Press Secretary of Admiral Mullen when the
latter was the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, from
where he retired a few months ago.

Pakistani-American businessman Ijaz has claimed
that he drafted the memo on Haqqani`s instructions and
delivered it through an intermediary to Mullen.

"He (Admiral Mullen) knew who was giving this (memo) to
him. You go back and look at it (the memo). There is nothing
in this that indicates that this was communication from
President Zardari," Kirby said in response to a question.

"He (Mullen) knew that he (intermediary) was passing it
to him," he said but declined to comment if the individual was
Gen Jones.

Kirby reiterated that Mullen does not know Ijaz.

"He never communicated with Mr Ijaz then or now.
There has been no communication between the two men," the
Pentagon Press Secretary said.

Meanwhile, Pakistan`s Ambassador to the US Husain Haqqani
has stuck to his stance that he had nothing to do with the
controversial memo sent to former US military chief Admiral
Mike Mullen to prevent a possible military coup, according to
a media report today.

Haqqani conveyed his position to President Asif Ali
Zardari during two informal meetings held at the presidency
yesterday, the Dawn quoted sources close to the President as
saying.

There was no official word about the reported meetings.

PTI