Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – The appointment of former military head as commander of Islamic Military Alliance still hangs in limbo although defence minister Khawaja Asif confirmed the appointment a week ago.

What stirred debate regarding the high-profile appointment is the latest interview of finance minister Ishaq Dar who stated that any decision regarding the appointment would be taken in accordance with the Constitution and in the larger national interest.

Dar maintained that he was not aware whether any post was offered and accepted by Gen Raheel adding that the former army chief would definitely ask Saudis to wait for formal approval in case he decides to head the alliance.

Talking exclusively to Samaa, Dar disclosed that Saudi Arabia was keen to appoint Raheel Sharif as head of the Islamic military alliance even prior to his retirement.

“Both Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and General Raheel Sharif agreed that it would be a conflict of interest. It would have been inappropriate to head the 39-nation NATO-type Islamic alliance while still serving as head of Pakistan’s armed forces,” he said.

“Raheel Sharif is performing Umrah. If he is offered the post, I am sure he will seek approval from the government,” the finance minister added.

The legislator clarified that as a professional soldier, Gen Raheel would fulfil all legal requirements.

On the other hand, Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif on Friday confirmed the recent development that former army chief General (r) Raheel Sharif was made the chief of 39-nation Islamic military coalition formed to combat terrorism.

Speaking to Geo News, Asif admitted that an agreement in this regard was finalised a few days ago; however, the defence minister said he didn’t have much information at the moment about the details.