Islamabad: Pakistan's powerful spy agency chief, General Shuja Pasha, had sought and got permission from senior Arab leaders to oust President Asif Ali Zardari, said Pakistani-American businessman Mansoor Ijaz while confirming the claim in a blog in a British daily.

Omar Waraich in his blog claimed that Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief Gen Shuja Pasha had sought and 'received permission from senior Arab leaders to sack Z' (President Zardari), reported a news channel.

The blog said: '`I was just informed by senior US intel,' Ijaz writes in a message on May 10, `that GD-SII Mr P asked for, and received permission, from senior Arab leaders a few days ago to sack Z. For what its worth'.' GD-SII was an anagram for DG-ISI.
 
Mansoor Ijaz, who had revealed the secret memo to Washington that said Zardari had feared a military coup after US commandos killed Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad May 2, said: 'This information has been on the record now for the better part of six weeks.'

Ijaz said Pakistan's then envoy to US Hussain Haqqani had approached him May 9 and he then decided to check the veracity of what Haqqani told him.

Mansoor Ijaz claimed that General Pasha had travelled throughout the Arab world and other countries after the May 2 raid.

'In many places he (ISI chief), in fact, explained that there was a lot of stress in the system because people could not understand who the blame should be pinned on for the fact that (Osama) bin Laden was on their soil,' said Mansoor Ijaz.

The secret memo to Washington had stunned Pakistan. The abrupt departure of President Zardari over a heart condition to Dubai Dec 6 had sparked coup rumours. There have been conflicting reports of his health, with one saying he suffered a minor attack and another  that he had a stroke that caused bleeding in the brain and facial paralysis.

The president has been discharged from the Dubai hospital and shifted to his residence, authorities said on Wednesday night.

(Agencies)