Imran Khan's aide denies interview where the PM said, 'desperate for help from Saudi'

WION Web Team Pakistan Oct 24, 2018, 09.53 AM(IST)

File photo of Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan. Photograph:( Reuters )

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'PM did not give any interview. A delegation of foreigners touring Pakistan called on him and were told about the state of affairs we are faced with. Why can't senior journalists like you get our version', Special Assistant to Pakistan's Prime Minister, Naeem ul Haque said.

Imran Khan's aide has denied the existence of an interview where the prime minister had said that Pakistan was "desperate" for financial help from Saudi

"PM did not give any interview. A delegation of foreigners touring Pakistan called on him and were told about the state of affairs we are faced with. Why can't senior journalists like you get our version", Special Assistant to Pakistan's Prime Minister, Naeem ul Haque said.

In an interview to journalists on October 20 Imran Khan had said that even though Pakistan was concerned about the death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, they were "desperate" for financial help from Saudi Arabia.

Khan who is currently in Riyadh is on his second visit to Saudi Arabia in just over a month. He has however not been able to secure significant financial assistance to stave off a looming balance of payments crisis in Pakistan.

In response to Haque, Amanda Coakley, a freelance Irish journalist who was a part of a UK media delegation that conducted the interview, stated that Naeem ul Haque was present in the room when the "on-the-record interview" took place.

She tweeted, "I beg to differ Mr ul Haque. On Sunday 14th three British journalists and myself an Irish journalist went to Pak as part of a UK Media Delegation and were offered an interview with PM Khan. On Saturday 20th we met the PM and conducted an on-the-record interview which lasted 1 hour and 12 minutes. You were in attendance as was Mr Fawad Chaudhry and Mr Sarfraz Hussain, picture attached".

She also mentioned that the interview had been recorded on "different devices" by "all journalists present".

(With inputs from agencies)