ISLAMABAD: Defence Minister Khwaja Asif has said that former army chief General Raheel Sharif didn’t seek ‘no objection certificate’ (NOC) for any foreign vocation, ARY News reported.
Issuing a statement in the Senate today, Asif said the Defence Ministry issues NOCs to retired army officers for any such jobs, but Gen (retd) Raheel Sharif didn’t seek any such clearance or certificate.
He maintained that prior permission either from Defence Ministry or the Pakistan Army was a prerequisite for any retired army officer before undertaking a new foreign job.
Chairman Senate Raza Rabbani asked whether the ex-army chief sought permission from Pakistan Army. The minister replied that Sharif also didn’t seek any clearance from the army as well.
“What I know that Mr. Raheel Sharif had informed about performing Umrah,” he told the Senate. He also hinted at amendment in rules designed for seeking foreign jobs.
Raheel Sharif ‘disappointed’ at reports
Defence analyst General (retd) Amjad Shoaib, speaking to ARY News, cited Raheel Sharif as saying that the ex-general was disappointed at remarks hurled on his heading the Saudi military alliance. He said Sharif was disappointed at people issuing statements without being cognizant on the matter.
Khawaja Asif has confirmed last week in an interview to a private television channel that the former army chief was appointed chief of the 39-nation Islamic military coalition formed to combat terrorism.
The headquarters of the Saudi-led coalition would be based in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia.
General Raheel Sharif, who started and led Operation Zarb-e-Azb in the country, retired from his post on November 29, 2016, and handed over the command of Pakistan army to Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa.
Formation of Islamic Military Alliance
Saudi Arabia on December 15, 2015 had announced the formation of Islamic military coalition to combat terrorism, a move welcomed by the United States which has been urging a greater regional involvement in the campaign against the militants who control swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria.
The Saudi statement described the military alliance’s objectives as: “a duty to protect the Islamic nation from the evils of all terrorist groups and organizations, whatever their sect and name, which wreak death and corruption on earth and aim to terrorize the innocent.”