ISLAMABAD - President Asif Ali Zardari is facing one of his most serious political crises after former US joint chiefs of staff chairman Mike Mullen confirmed Thursday he had received a message, allegedly relayed from the president days after the Osama bin Laden raid, pleading for help to prevent a military coup in Pakistan. The 'memogate scandal was full blown on Friday with the publication of the treacherous yet disputed memo, showing that Zardari regime had literally gone to the extant of compromising national security in wanting and offering selective cleansing of national security institutions, particularly the ISI, and offering help against the existing leadership of both al-Qaeda and Taliban. The memo also promised to allow the US to propose names of officials to investigate bin Laden's presence in Pakistan, allowing it greater oversight on Pakistan's nuclear weapons and bring to justice the perpetrators of the 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai. Coming to light of this secret memo asking Washington for help reining in the Pakistani military in return for extraordinary favours further threatened Pakistan envoy to US Husain Haqqani and intensified mistrust between the civilian and military establishment, shifting the pressure to President Zardari and his partys government that is already deeply unpopular. Haqqani is alleged to have got written the memo to the then top US military officer during the domestic turmoil triggered by the US raid that killed al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden, asking for his assistance in installing a 'new security team in Islamabad that would be friendly to Washington. These revelations have sparked a fresh political storm in Pakistan and if proved authentic, it would reinforce politically toxic charges that the government is colluding with the United States against the interests of the country and its army. The sensitivity of the situation led PPP to call a meeting of its core committee on Friday and deciding to investigate the matter and punish the culprits, if any. Sources said the party stalwarts termed the situation grim and said that the opposition was taking advantage of the circumstances and attacking the government on this front. President Zardari directed PPP leaders to effectively counter the oppositions propaganda. Main opposition party PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif Friday said that security and sovereignty of the country was on stake and called for the formation of a commission to probe the suspected secret memo. The ambassador, who has denied having anything to do with the memo, has already been summoned to Islamabad to clarify his position and there were reports that his removal from the post has already been decided. Some analysts have speculated that President Zardari himself could be in danger if charges that he approved the memo gain traction. "The target is not me, the target is President Zardari and Pakistani democracy," Haqqani was reported as saying. Speaking via telephone from Washington, Haqqani told a private news channel that he was due to board a direct flight to Pakistan on Friday evening. He reiterated that he never drafted or had any one draft a memo, nor did he deliver such a memo to Mike Mullen. A source told that Haqqani also had an appointment in DC with a doctor for high blood pressure and chest pains that he had been having since last night. Talking to another news channel later, the envoy said that he has got clearance from the doctor and will be leaving for Pakistan in 24 hours. The US businessman of Pakistani origin Mansoor Ijaz who is at the centre of this controversy told a private news channel on Friday that he was ready to face an inquiry over the memo controversy. Welcoming the calls for the formation of an inquiry commission to investigate the matter, he categorically stated that it was Pakistans Ambassador to the US Husain Haqqani who asked him to do all of this. Ijaz said that although Haqqani had denied writing the letter, he did not say that he wasnt the architect of the letter not has he denied that he did not conceive the letter. The day all this happened Haqqani sent me Blackberry messages and asked me call him at his hotel. All sensitive calls were made on land lines and not his cell phone Ijaz added. In an exclusive interview with The Cable, Mansoor Ijaz alleged that Husain Haqqani was not only the author of the memo, but the 'architect of the entire plan to overthrow Pakistan's military and intelligence leadership, and was seeking US help. "Haqqani believed he and the president (Zardari) could redraft the architectural blueprint of how Pakistan should be governed in the future - with civilians in command of the armed forces and intelligence services and the memorandum's content was geared in that direction," Ijaz said. Special correspondent adds from Washington: The memo allegedly authorised by President Asif Ali Zardari pledged to hand over to the United States all remaining al-Qaeda leaders on its soil, as well as Taliban leader Mohammad Omar and Sirajuddin Haqqani, in return for American help in preventing a military coup in Pakistan, according to The Washington Post. Alternatively, Pakistan could give US military forces a 'green light to conduct the necessary operations to capture or kill them on Pakistani soil, said the memo, which the Post said Friday it had obtained. The reported move is thought to have enraged Pakistans army, and the resulting controversy prompted Pakistans ambassador to Washington, Husain Haqqani, to offer his resignation this week. Against that backdrop, a column published last month in the Financial Times has proved explosive, the Post said. In it, Pakistani American businessman Mansoor Ijaz asserted that a senior Pakistani diplomat whom he has now identified Thursday as Haqqani asked him to help relay a request to Mike Mullen to stop the military from staging a coup. The memo said that in exchange for US 'direct intervention to convey a strong no-coup message to Gen Ashfaq Kayani, leader of Pakistans military, a newly-appointed civilian national security team would shepherd an independent investigation of the bin Laden matter and terminate any 'active service officers found to have been complicit in concealing the al-Qaeda leader. It said the civilian government would eliminate 'Section S of Pakistans Inter-Services Intelligence agency, a unit that handles relations with insurgent groups; bring to justice the perpetrators of the 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai; and implement new measures to secure Pakistans nuclear arsenal. The memo was unsigned but said it was being submitted by 'the members of the new national security team who will be inducted by the President of Pakistan with your support in this undertaking, according to the Post. Ijaz said the names included Husain Haqqani and his two predecessors as ambassador, both retired military officers, it said. Ijaz said the names were given orally to Mullen by the emissary who delivered the memo. Ijaz did not name the emissary. In an e-mail with the attached document sent to the intermediary May 11, the day of the delivery to Mullen, Ijaz wrote that it 'has the support of the President of Pakistan. Mullen initially denied having received such a memo, but this week his spokesman confirmed to Foreign Policy magazine that he had received the memo, although the spokesman said it was not acted on or taken seriously. Haqqani subsequently acknowledged speaking regularly to Ijaz but said the e-mail and text messages Ijaz has released were misleading and did not indicate that the diplomat helped draft the memo or authorised its delivery, according to the Post. I fail to understand why Mr Ijaz claims on the one hand to have helped the civilian government by delivering his memo and on the other insists on trying to destroy democracy by driving a wedge between elected civilians and the military in Pakistan with his persistent claims, Haqqani said in a statement Thursday. A Pakistani military intelligence official, who was not authorised to speak publicly, told the Post Kayani had demanded that Zardari summon Haqqani. As the saga escalated Thursday, many in Pakistans media began predicting that Zardari would sacrifice Haqqani, the dispatch said. Even commentators sympathetic to him and the government said that asking for US assistance in forestalling a coup would be an unpardonable offence. The Cable, which obtained the document at the centre of the controversy, confirmed that the memo is authentic and that it was received by Mullen. "Civilians cannot withstand much more of the hard pressure being delivered from the Army to succumb to wholesale changes," reads the memo, sent to Mullen via an unidentified US interlocutor by Ijaz. "If civilians are forced from power, Pakistan becomes a sanctuary for UBL's [Osama bin Laden's] legacy and potentially the platform for far more rapid spread of al Qaeda's brand of fanaticism and terror. A unique window of opportunity exists for the civilians to gain the upper hand over army and intelligence directorates due to their complicity in the UBL matter." The memo delivered just 9 days after the killing of bin Laden requests Mullen's help "in conveying a strong, urgent and direct message to [Pakistani Army Chief of Staff] Gen [Ashfaq Parvez] Kayani that delivers Washington's demand for him and [Inter-Services Intelligence chief] Gen [Ahmad Shuja] Pasha to end their brinkmanship aimed at bringing down the civilian apparatus." "Should you be willing to do so, Washington's political/military backing would result in a revamp of the civilian government that, while weak at the top echelon in terms of strategic direction and implementation (even though mandated by domestic political forces), in a wholesale manner replaces the national security adviser and other national security officials with trusted advisers that include ex-military and civilian leaders favourably viewed by Washington, each of whom have long and historical ties to the US military, political and intelligence communities," the memo states. The memo offers a six-point plan for how Pakistan's national security leadership would be altered in favour of US interests. President Asif Ali Zardari would start a formal 'independent inquiry to investigate the harbouring of bin Laden and take suggestions from Washington on who would conduct that inquiry. The memo promised this inquiry would identify and punish the Pakistani officials responsible for harbouring bin Laden. The memo pledges that Pakistan would then hand over top al-Qaeda and Taliban officials residing in Pakistan, including Ayman al-Zawahiri, Mullah Omar, and Sirajuddin Haqqani, or give US military forces a 'green light to conduct the necessary operations to capture or kill them on Pakistani soil, with the support of Islamabad. "This commitment has the backing of the top echelon on the civilian side of our house," the memo states. The memo also promises a new Pakistani national security leadership that would bring transparency and 'discipline to Pakistan's nuclear programme, cut ties with Section S of the ISI, which is "charged with maintaining relations to the Taliban, Haqqani network" and other rogue elements, and work with the Indian government to punish the perpetrators of the 2008 terrorist attack in Mumbai. Ijaz has claimed repeatedly that the memo came from a senior Pakistani official close to Zardari and was given to Mullen through a US interlocutor close to the then-serving Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman.