sindh govt ad

Gen Asim Munir to be next COAS, confirms Defence Minister after cabinet meeting

sindh govt ad

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Thursday decided to appoint General Asim Munir as new Army Chief and General Sahir Shamshad Mirza as Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee.

A summary in this regard has been forwarded to President Arif Alvi for approval.

Defense Minister Khawaja Asif told media persons that a detailed press release will be issued about the cabinet meeting decisions.

Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb in a tweet confirmed that Lt Gen Asim Munir would be next COAS and Lt Gen Sahir Shamshad Mirza will be next CJCSC.

Who is Pakistan’s next COAS General Asim Munir?

Lt Gen Asim Munir entered the service via the Officers Training School programme in Mangla, and was commissioned into the Frontier Force Regiment.

Gen Asim has been a close aide of Gen Bajwa ever since he commanded troops in the Force Command Northern Areas as a brigadier under the outgoing army chief, who was then Commander X Corps.

Lt Gen Munir was later appointed Military Intelligence director general in early 2017, and in October next year was made the Inter-Services Intelligence chief.

However, his stint as the top intelligence officer turned out to be the shortest ever, as he was replaced by Lt Gen Faiz Hamid within eight months, on the insistence of then-PM Imran Khan.

He was posted as Gujranwala Corps commander, a position he held for two years, before being moved to the General Headquarters as the quartermaster general.

Who is Sahir Shamshad Mirza?

Lieutenant General Sahir Shamshad Mirza hails from the Sindh Regiment and held senior leadership positions during the past seven years.

Lt-Gen Mirza came to prominence as the director general military operations during the last two years of retired Gen Raheel Sharif’s tenure. In that role, he was part of Gen Sharif’s core team at the General Headquarters, which supervised the military operation against the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan and other militants in North Waziristan.

Moreover, Lt-Gen Mirza was closely involved in the Quadrilateral Coordination Group that brokered intra-Afghan talks involving Pakistan, China, Afghanistan and the United States. He was also a member of the Sartaj Aziz-led committee on reforms for Gilgit-Baltistan.

After his promotion to the three-star rank, he was appointed chief of general staff, effectively making him the second-most powerful person in the army after the chief of army staff.

In that role, he was closely engaged in crucial decision-making related to national security and foreign affairs. He also joined former foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi in strategic talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in 2021.

In October 2021, he was posted as corps commander Rawalpindi to enable him to acquire operational experience and become eligible to be considered for top posts.