Former ISI chief Asim Munir appointed new chief of Pakistan Army
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Former Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency chief Lt Gen Asim Munir has been appointed as the new chief of the Pakistan Army on 24 November by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, succeeding Gen Qamar Bajwa.
He replaced outgoing General Qamar Javed Bajwa on 29 November.
Bajwa was appointed army chief in 2016 for three years. In the year 2019, he was given a three-year extension.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif wrote to President Alvi to appoint Lt. Gen. Munir as the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) and Lt. Gen. Sahir Shamshad Mirza as the Chief of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC).
With the approval of Munir's name by the President, the process of appointment was completed.
Lt Gen Munir has served as the chief of the two most powerful intelligence agencies Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Military Intelligence (MI).
However, his tenure as ISI chief was the shortest ever and within eight months he was replaced by Lt Gen Faiz Hameed in 2019 at the behest of the then Prime Minister Imran Khan.
The CJCSC is the highest authority in the hierarchy of the armed forces, but major powers, including deployment, appointments and transfers of troops, rest with the Chief of Army Staff. Because of these powers, the army chief is the most powerful.
Pakistan has been in existence for more than 75 years and the country has been under military rule for more than half of that time. In such a situation, the army has been interfering a lot in the security and foreign policy matters of the country.
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