Days after Pakistani newspaper Dawn reported that the government had raised concerns on the alleged military support for terror groups, the journalist who reported the story has been barred from leaving the country.
The Guardian reported:
Cyril Almeida, a prominent columnist and reporter for the leading Dawn newspaper, said he had been told he had been put on the â€śexit control listâ€ť days after penning a front-page story about a dramatic confrontation between Pakistanâ€™s civilian and army leadership over militant groups that operate from Pakistan but engage in war against India and Afghanistan.
The report adds that Almeida had booked a Tuesday morning flight to Dubai for a long-planned holiday with his family but received word that he would not be allowed to board the plane.
I am told and have been informed and have been shown evidence that I am on the Exit Control List.â€” cyril almeida (@cyalm) October 10, 2016
Was a long-planned trip, for at least several mths now. There are certain things that I will never, ever forgive.â€” cyril almeida (@cyalm) October 10, 2016
Puzzled, saddened. Had no intention of going anywhere; this is my home. Pakistan.â€” cyril almeida (@cyalm) October 11, 2016
The report in question, had earlier stated that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif admitted to Pakistan's diplomatic isolation and told the ISI to crack down on terrorists and conclude the probes into the 2008 Mumbai and 2016 Pathankot terror attacks.
Sharif's blunt demand came at a high-level meeting of civilian officials with the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief, Gen. Rizwan Akhtar, the report cited sources who were present, as saying.
However, the Pakistan government has issued multiple statements claiming that the Dawn report was fabricated and false.
In it's latest statement on Tuesday, the Office of the Pakistan Prime Minister, strongly denied the contents of the newspaper report and rejected it as a fabrication.
The Dawn reported that top civilian and military leadership met on Monday, following which a statement was released, which said:
â€śThe participants were unanimous that the published story was clearly violative of universally acknowledged principles of reporting on National Security issues and has risked the vital state interests through inclusion of inaccurate and misleading contents which had no relevance to actual discussion and facts...Prime Minister took serious notice of the violation and directed that those responsible should be identified for stern action."
However, Dawn has stood by its original story and released an Editor's note.