ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah claimed on Monday that the leaks controversy, which had put the cyber security of the PM’s official residence and the office at stake, had been resolved and that no “hostile intelligence agency” was involved.

The comments came made during a TV show hours after former prime minister Imran Khan, one of the primary characters in the leaked clips, announced that he would approach the courts for a probe into the matter.

The interior minister said the controversy was resolved, adding that there was no proof of the involvement of a foreign spy agency in the episode. “Some staff members of the PM’s House have been identified… such things are done for money,” the minister added.

The minister added that a “tiny” recording device was regularly planted on the premises to record telephonic conversations and informal chats at the PM’s Office. The interior minister added that the findings of the investigations being carried out could also be shared with courts through an in-camera briefing.

Editorial: More leaks

According to Mr Sanaullah, the probe would continue. He added that there was no harm in making the report of this investigation public, but a final decision in this regard will depend on PM Shehbaz Sharif, the federal cabinet, and the National Security Committee (NSC).

Interestingly, the government had formed three separate investigation and oversight bodies to probe the audio leaks; one team comprised officials of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Intelligence Bureau (IB); the second one included officials of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to ascertain how the US cipher went missing from the PM’s House; while a third team was an oversight committee headed by the interior minister to supervise the investigations.

Though Mr Sanaullah confirmed the involvement of some individuals in the leaks, he did not confirm whether any arrests had been made. Earlier in the day, media reports claimed that two suspects had been taken into custody over their involvement in the leaked clips.

However, there was no official confirmation from the government and relevant quarters in this regard.

Published in Dawn, October 11th, 2022

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