ISLAMABAD: Lieutenant General Qamar Javed Bajwa has been appointed as the new Chief of Army Staff of Pakistan, ARY News reported.
President Mamnoon Hussain has made the appointment on the advice of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
According to a statement issued by the Prime Minister House, Lt. General Zubair Mahmood Hayat has also been promoted as four star general and appointed as Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee.
Lt. General Qamar Javed Bajwa is currently working as Inspector General of the Training and Evaluation at the General Headquarters. He has also commanded the Army’s 10 Corps. He belongs to the infantry’s Baloch Regiment.
Lt. General Zubair Mahmood Hayat has served as Director General of Strategic Plans Division and Corps Commander Bahawalpur. Presently, he is working as Chief of General Staff at the General Headquarters.
Three former army chiefs General Yahya Khan, General Miza Aslam Beg, and General Ashfaq Pevez Kiyani also belonged to the Baloch Regiment.
Bajwa is a graduate of the Canadian Forces Command and Staff College, Toronto, Canada, The Naval Post Graduate University, California and the National Defence University, Islamabad.
Bajwa served as Chief of Staff at Corps X in Rawalpindi and has also commanded formation division in Northern Areas. He has also commanded a United Nations peacekeeping mission in Congo.
He also served in Corps X as lieutenant colonel, where he was the General Staff Officer. He was awarded Hilal-i-Imtiaz (Military) in 2011. He has also remained in command of the Infantry School in Quetta.
He has extensive experience of handling affairs in Kashmir and the northern areas of the country, and is said to consider extremism and terrorism a bigger threat for the country than India.
The others contenders were Bahawalpur Corps Commander Lt Gen Javed Iqbal Ramday, and Multan Corps Commander Lt Gen Ishfaq Nadeem.
The decision was made after Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif returned from a visit to Turkmenistan. He had received a summary from the Ministry of Defence and held informal consultations of the matter.
MEETING WITH PRIME MINISTER
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has separate meetings with the incoming Chief of Army Staff and Chairman Joint Chief of Staff Committee at the PM House. The premier congratulated both on the appointments to the top military positions.
PM Sharif expressed hope that both generals will continue to serve the country. Gen. Bajwa thanked the premier and said that the defence of the nation was a solemn duty and responsibility.
Both said that the armed forces of Pakistan are ready to make any sacrifices for the defence and integrity of the Pakistan, and are fully prepared for any challenge.