Pakistan names former spy chief as new head of army

Pakistan on Thursday named former spy chief Lt. Gen. Syed Asim Munir as chief of the South Asian country’s army, ending weeks of speculation over an appointment that comes amid intense debate around the military’s influence on public life.

Munir, the country’s most senior general and a former head of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency, will take over from Army Chief Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa, who will retire on November 29 after six years in what is normally a three-year post.

His promotion, ratified by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and approved by President Arif Alvi Thursday, means Munir will now oversee Pakistan’s nuclear weapons operations.

The Pakistani military is often accused of meddling in the politics of a country that has experienced numerous coups and been ruled by generals for extended periods since its formation in 1947, so the appointment of new army chiefs is often a highly politicized issue.

Munir’s appointment may prove controversial with supporters of former…

This story appeared first on, 2022-11-25.
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