Pakistan's envoy to US to be recalled?

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Islamabad, Nov 16: Pakistan's political circles were abuzz today (Nov 16) with speculation about the recall of Ambassador to the US Husain Haqqani in the wake of media reports on secret communications between President Asif Ali Zardari and the American administration to avert a possible military takeover.

Haqqani has been at the centre of a controversy following Pakistani-American businessman Mansoor Ijaz's revelations about Zardari's purported efforts to reach out to the Obama administration to prevent Army Chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani from staging a coup in the wake of the US raid that killed al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden.

Ijaz has claimed that he was asked to contact the US administration by a senior Pakistani official.

Though Ijaz did not identify this official, the media and analysts have speculated that Haqqani was involved in the matter without providing any proof to back up their claims.

Following a meeting of the ruling Pakistan People's Party's top leaders chaired by Zardari on Monday, an official statement said a decision had been made to call Haqqani to Islamabad to "brief the country's leadership on a host of issues impacting on Pakistan-US relations and the recent developments".

The speculation about Haqqani's possible recall gained ground after Zardari's meetings yesterday with Kayani and US Ambassador Cameron Munter.

Presidential spokesperson Farhatullah Babar said Zardari and Kayani had discussed the current security situation and professional matters of the Pakistan Army.

However, the INP news agency quoted its sources as saying that Kayani had conveyed the military's "reservations" over a letter purportedly sent to former US military chief Admiral Mike Mullen by Mansoor Ijaz "with the help of a top ambassador".


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