Islamabad: Pakistan`s civil and military
authorities have rejected American businessman Mansoor Ijaz`s
claim that President Asif Ali Zardari had told Army Chief Gen
Ashfaq Parvez Kayani that the covert US operation against
Osama bin laden was carried out with his approval.
Presidential spokesman Farhatullah Babar described as
"absolutely untrue" Ijaz`s claim that Zardari had advance
information about the raid against bin Laden on May 2 last
year in Abbottabad.
"A section of the media has carried reports implying that
President Asif Ali Zardari had through a phone call, on the
night of the May 2 raid on Osama bin Laden, informed the Army
chief that the operation had been conducted with his
approval," Babar said in a brief statement.
These reports are "absolutely untrue and unfounded", he
said. In a separate statement, a military spokesman referred
to Ijaz`s claims and said there was "no telephone conversation
between the President and the (Army Chief) on the night
between May 1 and May 2, 2011".
"The military leadership has briefed the joint session of
the parliament as well as the Abbotabad commission on the
subject and there is nothing more to add to it," the military
spokesman said, referring to the judicial commission that is
probing bin Laden`s presence in Pakistan.
The media had quoted Ijaz, the main accuser in the memo
scandal that rocked Pakistan`s political and diplomatic
circles, as saying that Zardari had advance information of the
US raid that killed the al Qaeda leader in the garrison town
Ijaz further claimed Zardari had telephoned the Army
chief on the day of the US raid and asked him not to use F-16
combat jets to target the helicopters carrying the US troops.
Ijaz has offered no credible evidence to back up his claims.