ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif praised the military’s professional abilities while holding a meeting with the new army chief Syed Asim Munir on Wednesday, saying it was a huge honor for anyone to lead the armed forces of Pakistan which were tirelessly working for the country’s security.
This was Munir’s first meeting with the prime minister after taking over the army’s command in a ceremony held at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi on Tuesday. He replaced General Qamar Javed Bajwa who retired from the post after leading the army for six years.
“We have full confidence in the professional capabilities of the Pakistan Army,” the prime minister was quoted as saying in a statement released by his office after the meeting.
“It is a great honor to lead the Pakistan Army,” he said while addressing the top general. “It is hoped that the armed forces under your leadership will deal with the challenges facing the country’s security in a better way.”
Sharif congratulated Munir on taking charge of his new position.
He maintained the whole nation was proud of the army’s role in protecting the frontiers of the country and fighting violent extremism and militancy.
The army has ruled Pakistan for almost half of its 75-year history, either through coups or as an invisible guiding hand in politics.
Munir’s appointment coincides with a dispute between the army and former premier Imran Khan, who blames top military generals for playing a part in his ouster in a parliamentary no-trust vote earlier this year.
Khan also expressed hope earlier in the day the new military leadership would end the “prevailing trust deficit” between the army and the public.
The PM Office said in its statement Sharif’s meeting with the army chief focused on professional issues related to the country’s defense and security.
Munir also met President Arif Alvi during the day.
In a separate meeting, Alvi discussed defense related matters with the new Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Sahir Shamshad Mirza.