Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Tariq Fatemi has rejected the allegations levelled against him in connection with the inquiry into a Dawn story.

In a farewell letter (bottom of the article) leaked by a source in the Foreign Office, Fatemi said: “I reject recent allegations, insinuations and innuendos.”

“Such suggestions are particularly hurtful to someone who has served Pakistan for nearly five decades with honour and dignity.”

Fatemi’s response comes as Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Saturday issued directives for his removal as special assistant in line with the recommendations of the committee set up to hold an inquiry into a story published in Dawn last year.

Hours after the Prime Minister’s Office issued the directives, however, Inter-Services Public Relations said the Army had rejected the notification, calling it ‘incomplete’.

“Notification on Dawn Leak is incomplete and not in line with recommendations by the Inquiry Board. Notification is rejected,” the ISPR chief tweeted.

In the letter addressed to his colleagues at Pakistan’s foreign missions, Fatemi said, “Over the years, I have had to deal with many sensitive matters, becoming privy to some of the most highly classified information, on issues of national security.

“I have also had the honour of working directly under distinguished diplomats, both professional as well as political appointees, all of whom reposed their highest trust in my abilities and particularly so, in my lifelong commitment to discretion. You would appreciate that taking due care and caution become a second nature in our professional careers.”

Fatemi thanked his fellow Foreign Service officers for their support, adding: “Be that as it may, my commitment to Pakistan, my passion for diplomacy and my association with the Foreign Service family will continue.”

He said his nearly four years long stint at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs “enhanced the esteem and respect that i have always had for our country’s diplomats… who bear the rigors of serving with limited resources in difficult environments, defending and promoting the nation’s interests, against huge odds”.