General Asim Munir takes charge as Pakistan’s 17th army chief

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Asim munir
Outgoing COAS General Qamar Javed Bajwa is handing over the "baton of command" to General Asim Munir. Image courtesy: Radio Pakistan

Rawalpindi: General Asim Munir Tuesday assumed charge as the 17th army chief of Pakistan at a ceremony held at the General Headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi.

Outgoing army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa formally handed over the “baton of command” to General Asim Munir at the ceremony, which was attended by senior serving and retired officers, diplomats as well as government functionaries.

The newly-promoted Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, General Sahir Shamshad Mirza, also attended the ceremony.

Prior to the ceremony, both General Bajwa and General Munir laid a wreath at the martyrs’ monument. The ceremony kicked off with the military band performing a national song dedicated to the “defenders of the nation”.

General Qamar Javed’s farewell speech

The outgoing COAS was the chief guest at the ceremony. Addressing the ceremony, General Qamar Javed Bajwa said that he was “thankful” for being given the “opportunity to lead the Pakistan Army”.

He congratulated General Asim on his promotion and hoped that the latter’s promotion would be a cause for the progress of the country and the army.

“I have full faith that under his leadership army will reach new heights and his appointment will prove to be a positive for the country,” said General Bajwa. He added that he was happy to know that he was retiring by handing the army to an able officer like General Munir.

Govt picks Gen Asim Munir as the new Army Chief

After weeks of confusion over the appointment of the next army chief, the dust finally settled down last week, and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif chose General Asim Munir, who was the senior-most Lt. General on the summary for the appointment, to succeed incumbent COAS General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

The summary of General Asim Munir’s appointment was ratified by President Arif Alvi on the same day.

Who is General Asim Munir, PM Shehabz’s choice for army chief?

The summary forwarded by the GHQ to the federal government for the appointment of the next COAS had six names. Of the six potential candidates, General Asim was the senior-most officer.

Gen Asim Munir will be the new Army Chief

Gen Asim Munir joined the Pakistan Army from the Mangala Officers Training School program. He then became a commissioned officer in the Frontier Force Regiment.

He also commanded the Northern Areas Force as a brigadier. In 2017, was appointed the Director-General of Military Intelligence. In 2018, he was chosen as the Director-General of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).