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Pakistan's former Ambassador to the US Hussain Haqqani.—File Photo
Pakistan's former Ambassador to the US Hussain Haqqani.—File Photo

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Tuesday ordered former Ambassador to the US Hussain Haqqani to appear before the court within four weeks time.

A bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, was hearing the 'Memogate scandal' case here Tuesday.

Haqqani was first named in the 'memogate' controversy by US businessman Mansoor Ijaz who accused the former ambassador of asking him (Ijaz) to deliver a contentious memo to Washington, asking for its help in reining in Pakistan's military days after the May 2, 2011 US raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound.

Haqqani later resigned as ambassador over the controversy, and later left the country last year.

Putting forth her arguments during today's hearing, Haqqani's counsel Asma Jahangir said that the situation in Pakistan was very different now as compared to when the former ambassador had left the country for the US.

She said that one of the complainants in the case was about to be sworn in as the country's prime minister.

The bench, however, ensured Jahangir that regardless of who leads the government, the court would ensure just treatment to Haqqani according to the law.

No action would be taken (against Haqqani) contrary to the law, said Chief Justice Chaudhry.

Justice Asif Saeed said that the report of the commission investigating the memo case has been released, and that the court can order the federal government to conduct a trial.

Jahangir said that she has asked her client to appear before the court, however, he should also be allowed to testify through video-link like witness Mansoor Ijaz.

Adjourning the hearing, the apex court formally ordered the Interior Secretary to ensure Haqqani's return to the country within four weeks time.

Comments (18) Closed

G.Khan Jun 04, 2013 08:44pm

Like High Commissioner in UK. Haqqani will be too sick to travel to Pakistan Tax payers money is wasted as nothing will come out of this. both will refuse to come to Pakistan

G.Khan UK

umar Jun 04, 2013 09:46pm

Nothing will happen. An eye wash and a scandal for cheap popularity again to divert public attention from basic issues of the nation awaiting huge flux of inflation nearby.

Tahir Jun 04, 2013 10:02pm

I admire the persistence of SC in this particular case. Do I smell a rat somewhere. At the end of the day, he may be acquitted and let off scot-free.

Wake up to the smell of coffee Mr Haqqani. You may be our future president. You never know in Pakistan.

Muhammad Farooq Jun 04, 2013 10:34pm

Best bet for Mr Haqqani is to appear before the court and clear his name from the memogate, if he is really innocent.

muzammil ullah khan Jun 05, 2013 12:16am

In your dreams Mr CJP-N . This guy is not as stupid as Musharraf !! With justice unavailable in courts and whims ruling the roost , no body in his sound mind would like to present himself or herself before these courts for justice . I detest this fellow Haqqani but I give him full marks for fooling these so called wise guys sitting on the benches . He also has an able lawyer unlike Musharraf who hired a nit wit as his senior lawyer .

Moiz Jun 05, 2013 12:49am

Chief Sahib. No more stunts for cheap popularity. You have done your part in keeping Zardari stay in power for five years. Now take your time and enjoy remaining few months in office. Have mercy on poor people of this country.

Mustafa Jun 05, 2013 01:36am

He won't come over to Pakistan. He will cause further embarrassment for Pakistan when because of him we will be in international news for bad reasons. I hope, by any legal means, he is brought back to Pakistan, a fair trial is carried out, and punishments, if any, are carried out in a manner that dignifies Pakistan's resolve for the rule of law with in and outside Pakistan.

El Cid Jun 05, 2013 01:44am

This guy is not innocent. He should be tried for high treason. I have studied his shenanigans in detail [Primary sources] and also of Pervez Musharraf. A fair open trial is mandatory for both.

However, I am satisfied they both need to be hanged together in the an open Islamabad public square and their properties confiscated to the state and distributed among their victims.

There are others who may be candidates for the firing squad and life imprisonment. President Zardari is one of them. The other is General kayani,

MSA Jun 05, 2013 02:43am

I won't advise Mr. Haqqani to go back to Pakistan to clear his name. He does not have to. Just learn from Pres. Musharraf's case. Pakistan is a country where you cannot trust any body - government, courts, lawyers, or even common people.

Raza Jun 05, 2013 03:02am

Don't forget he also spent millions of Pakistani diplomatic funds in the US. Need to be asked that as well. Now he conveniently resides in the US and takes the plea of a threatened individual. How typical of all corrupt people.

If he does not return to Pakistan, he will forever be called a traitor in Pakistan. He has to come to terms with that.

ehsun Jun 05, 2013 03:36am

@Muhammad Farooq: funny!

Kum Aqal Pakistani Jun 05, 2013 03:45am

I knew it that he will nont be back but other people didnt

fauz Jun 05, 2013 05:11am

@G.Khan: I can bet with any body if any force can bring any person required by law to Pakistan. High Commissioner of Pakistan in London before getting the job from Zardari was permanently residing there. Also Haqani, the same way living in USA for long time. Immigration authorities should investigate, what other Passports both of them posses or with what status they live abroad so freely..

ali k Jun 05, 2013 05:30am

He must appear in PAKISTAN before the court. He must face the court and provide evidence for or against. No one should be allowed to use video-link from USA. It is the disgrace of our Supreme Court and of the justice System. Haqqani is a citizen of Pakistan who held a high position for the Pakistani government. He should not be allowed to hide in the US and not face the justice system. This case must be taken to logical conclusion, something come out of it or not. We need to start respecting our system and our institutions. No one from the US can escape to go hide in some other country and not face the justice system, so why should Pakistanis be allowed to run and hide in other countries? This must be stopped once and for all even if it costs money. Only then people in Pakistan will realize that there is no hiding for them if they do something wrong or something to damage the integrity of the country.

Expat (usa) Jun 05, 2013 06:09am

SC can order him to appear before the court within 4 weeks , the answer from Hussain Haqqani is NO. He is the same man when granted bail promised to appear before court within 5 days when summoned. He never kept his promise. Mr. Haqqani is well protected & supported by conservative American Think Tanks, he is well settled here. Memogate Scandal was not the brain child of Haqqani, he was ordered to do so by the current occupant of the presidency., why not question him ?

Abdullah N Jun 05, 2013 06:17am

Hope Nawaz Sharif has enough sense , instead of picking up a shifty, wheeling dealing character like Hussain Haqqani, he should picks a senior career diplomat as new ambassador to USA..In Memogate Scandal, Haqqani was a messanger boy , a small fry, the order was issued by a higher up in the presidency of Pakistan. Haqqani just carried the message to Admiral Mullen

Zohai Jun 05, 2013 09:10am

Topi drama once again, whole Pakistan knows abt Haqqani n his team performance except our great SC....bravoo!! Salute to SC.

usman Jun 05, 2013 09:53am

@umar: Yes you are right. Nothing going to happen. This is only a drama.