The military on Tuesday announced major reshuffle in its top brass, replacing the Rawalpindi corps commander and appointing a new chief of general staff (CGS), considered the most important position after the army chief.
Lt General Azhar Abbas was appointed the new CGS, who heads both the operational and intelligence wings of the army.
As per a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Lt General Sahir Shamshad Mirza, who was earlier serving as the CGS, would now head the Rawalpindi corps that looks after the Line of Control (LoC).
Lt General Sahir has replaced Lt General Azhar.
He was appointed the CGS in November 2019 but would now command a corps — something he has never done since he was promoted to the three-star rank in 2018.
He would be among the top three senior most generals in November 2022, when army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s extended term expires.
He is seen as a potential candidate for either the post of chairman of the joint chiefs of staff committee or the army chief.
In other changes, Lt General Muhammad Chiragh Haider has been posted as the Multan corps commander replacing Lt General Muhammad Waseem Ashraf, who has now been appointed as the joint staff headquarters director general.
Before being posted as the Multan corps commander, Lt General Chiragh was serving as the joint staff headquarters director general.
In April this year, 37 brigadiers including two women officers of the Pakistan Army had been promoted to the rank of major-general, the ISPR announced in a statement.
“Promotion board from Brigadier to Major General was held at General Headquarters. Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa presided [the meeting],” the military’s media wing said.
On November 5 last year, six major generals of the Pakistan Army were promoted to the rank of lieutenant general, a statement issued by the ISPR said.
Those promoted included former DG ISPR Major General Asif Ghafoor, Major General Akhtar Nawaz, Major General Sardar Hassan Azhar Hayat, Major General Salman Fayyaz Ghani, Major General Sarfraz Ali and Major General Muhammad Ali.
The army had also announced new postings and appointments among the top brass. Lieutenant General Nadeem Ahmed Anjum was appointed the Karachi corps commander.
Lt General Muhammad Abdul Aziz was appointed Lahore Corps commander.
Lt Gen Khalid Zia was appointed the Bahawalpur Corps commander. Lt Gen Sarfraz Ali was appointed Commander Southern Command, encompassing Balochistan and other southern parts of the country.
Lt Gen Muhammad Ali was appointed as the new commander of the Army Strategic Forces Command.
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