Pakistan's National Security Advisor Discloses His 'Secret Visit to Israel'

ByFaisal Chughtai | Published date:

Dr. Moeed Yusuf, the National Security Adviser (NSA), has unequivocally denied a political leader's accusation that he met with Israeli officials in private.

Moeed Yusuf's statement came a day after the Foreign Office rejected Israeli media allegations that Syed Zulfiqar Bukhari, a prominent Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader, visited Aviv in November to meet with Mossad chief Moshe Yaalon.

"Very disappointed to be informed that the leader of a major political party has insinuated that I had secretly met Israeli officials. Let me state categorically and on record that I have not had any meetings with any Israeli officials nor have I visited Israel," Yusuf reacted to the news.

According to the NSA, Prime Minister Imran Khan has clarified that Pakistan would continue to support Palestinians' right to a just two-state solution.

In response to a storey in Israel's Hayom newspaper that a Pakistani ambassador had visited Tel Aviv in November, SAPM Zulfi Bukhari has rejected the claims that he covertly visited Israel for talks with high government officials.

“DID NOT go to Israel. The funny bit is Pakistani paper says I went to Israel based on an ‘Israeli news source’ and the Israeli paper says I went to Israel based on a ‘Pakistani source’ – wonder who this imaginative Pakistani source is. Apparently, I’m the only one who was kept out of the loop,” Zulfi Bukhari tweeted.

According to an Israeli newspaper, Zulfi Bukhari travelled from Islamabad to Tel Aviv via London, citing a "source in Islamabad." According to the report, the SAPM met with foreign ministry officials as well as Mossad Director Yossi Cohen in Tel Aviv to relay signals from Pakistan's highest leadership.

According to the report, the United Arab Emirates exerted significant pressure on the visit.

Meanwhile, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the Chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), has requested a probe into who boarded the jet to Israel.

“Investigation should be made why an airplane in November went to Israel from Pakistan and stayed there for 10 hours. We are demanding if this airplane took off from another country, it should also be investigated,” In a media interview, he remarked this in response to a query regarding Imran Khan's close buddy visiting Israel.