Two top Pakistani newspapers recently reported the same basic story, and it came as no shocker: Mansoor Ijaz, the Pakistani-American business man described as being at the center of the memo (Memogate) scandal and now abroad, will not come to Pakistan to testify.
Here is how The Dawn, one of the country’s two largest English-language dailies, reported that Ijaz was not returning due to “unsatisfactory security conditions.” For those with a mordant sense of humor, that way of putting was at least mildly amusing. Then The Dawn’s competitor, The News, the largest English language newspaper in Pakistan, reported, with a pinch more of realism in their assessment, that if Ijaz returned, he would fall into a trap because he would be arrested upon arrival, which, we shall assume, meets their competitor’s “unsatisfactory security conditions” standard. For his part, Ijaz proposes to record his testimony in London or Zurich, far from the grasp of the Pakistani government.
No matter how either newspaper decides to put it, Ijaz apparently has no plans to risk arrest – or worse – be returning to offer testimony. Our only question is, does this really come as a surprise?
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