Lt Gen (retd) Asad Durrani summoned to GHQ for violating military's code of conduct

RAWALPINDI: Lieutenant General (retd) Asad Durrani, the former chief of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), has been summoned to the Pakistan Army’s General Headquarters (GHQ) for explaining his position on views attributed to him in his book The Spy Chronicles, a Pakistani military spokesman confirmed.

“Lt Gen (retd) Asad Durrani [is] being called to the GHQ on 28th May, 2018,” Major General Asif Ghafoor, the director general (DG) of the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), said on Twitter.

“[Durrani] will be asked to explain his position on views attributed to him in book ‘Spy Chronicles’.”
Major General Ghafoor further said the “attribution [is] taken as violation of Military Code of Conduct applicable on all serving and retired military personnel.”
The development comes hours after former premier Nawaz Sharif and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Senator Raza Rabbani voiced their reservations over the book.

Speaking to journalists in Islamabad, Nawaz demanded that an emergency meeting of the National Security Committee (NSC) be summoned over the book written by Durrani.

The former premier said that a trustworthy national commission should be constituted to look over such matters.
Rabbani, who formerly served as the chairman of the Senate of Pakistan, also severely criticised the teaming up of former chiefs of Pakistan and India’s spy agencies to write the book.

“A book co-authored by former chief of India’s spy agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) AS Dulat and ex-chief of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lieutenant General (retd) Asad Durrani has recently been published,” Rabbani said, while addressing a Senate session on Friday.

“It is shocking that on one hand Pakistan and India relations are at an all-time low and on the other hand, former spy chiefs of both the countries are teaming up to write a book.”

Rabbani further lashed out saying that had a civilian or a politician teamed up with a counterpart to write a book similar to Dulat and Durrani’s, then there would have been a “hue and cry.”

“Had a politician done the same thing he would have been labelled a traitor,” he asserted.

On May 14, a meeting of the NSC had been called over Nawaz’s statement on the 2008 Mumbai attacks.

In an interview to Dawn newspaper recently Nawaz had said, “Militant organisations are active. Call them non-state actors, should we allow them to cross the border and kill 150 people in Mumbai? Explain it to me. Why can’t we complete the trial?”
His remarks were played up by the Indian media as an admission of Pakistan’s involvement in the terrorist attacks, even though similar questions and statements have been raised from civilian and security officials in Pakistan earlier.
Following the backlash on international and local media, army spokesperson Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor had said on Twitter that the army had “suggested” that the NSC meeting be called to clarify the country’s stance on the statement.

Analysts’ views

Defence analyst Shehzad Chaudhry, in his response to the development, said that whoever speaks against the state, then not just the military could inquire him, but a citizen could also go to a court of law against it.
Irshad Bhatti termed the decision to summon Durrani to explain his position right, saying the former spy chief should be summoned to court and punished as well.
Major General (retd) Aijaz Awan said it is good to impeach a person, adding, “There is no expiry date of the military’s oath.
“If the book has such revelations that fall into the category of official secret act, then punishment should be given,” Awan added.