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General Qamar Javed Bajwa officially took charge as the 16th Chief of Army Staff (COAS) during the Change of Command ceremony underway at Army Hockey Stadium near General Headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi today.http://khyberawaz.com/wp-admin/post-new.php
During the ceremony former COAS General Raheel Sharif handed over the ‘command stick’ to General Qamar Bajwa.
General Raheel Sharif, the chief guest at the ceremony, earlier reviewed the guard of honour and addressed the ceremony.
Former army chiefs and senior military officials are present at the Change of Command ceremony. Federal ministers, members of the Parliament and foreign diplomats are also in attendance.
‘Privileged to have commanded world’s best army’: Gen Raheel Sharif
Addressing the ceremony, Gen Raheel Sharif said he is thankful to God Almighty for having been given the opportunity to command the world’s best army.
He also thanked the Armed Forces and the Pakistani nation for their resolve and support during every step of his journey.
The outgoing COAS said he always prioritised national interest in every decision he made during his tenure as army chief.
“I am absolutely certain the Pakistan Army will always fulfill the nation’s expectations,” he said.
Lauding the efforts of the Armed Forces in the war against terror, Gen Raheel Sharif said the war has been successful and its results are evident today. However, the security situation in the region remains complicated, he added.
“It is the need of the hour that the entire nation unites to counter the challenges Pakistan faces,” the outgoing army chief said.
Gen Raheel Sharif warned India not to mistake Pakistan’s patience for weakness, otherwise it would prove dangerous.
The outgoing COAS said the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a great example of budding peace and prosperity in the region.
“The first CPEC shipment at Gwadar Port has proven that the country’s journey to progress cannot be stopped now,” he said, adding that the enemies of CPEC should stop bashing the project and start benefiting from it.
Gen Raheel Sharif said he believes in strong institutions and called for all the institutions to work together for peace and prosperity of the country.
Gen Qamar Bajwa profile
General Qamar Javed Bajwa was commissioned in 16 Baloch Regiment on 24 October 1980. He is a graduate of Canadian Forces Command and Staff College (Toronto) Canada, Naval Post Graduate University, Monteray( California) USA, National Defence Univesity, Islamabad.
He has been an instructor at School of Infantry and Tactics, Quetta, Command and Staff College, Quetta and NDU. He has also been Brigade Major of an Infantry Brigade and Chief of Staff of Rawalpindi Corps.
He has commanded 16 Baloch Regiment, an Infantry Brigade and has commanded Infantry Division in Northern Areas (Commander FCNA). General Bajwa has also commanded Pakistan Contingent in Congo. He has commanded Rawalpindi Corps, and his last position was Inspector General Training and Evaluation at GHQ.
Gen Qamar Bajwa, Gen Raheel Sharif visit Yadgar-e-Shuhada
Earlier today prior to the ceremony, Army Chief-designate Gen Qamar Bajwa and COAS Gen Raheel Sharif arrived at Yadgar-e-Shuhada GHQ where they laid floral wreaths and offered Fatiha over the graves of the martyred.
Gen Raheel Sharif’s farewell meeting with PM, President
Earlier, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif met Prime Minister and President in his farewell meeting, visited ISPR headquarter and also chaired his last Corps Commanders Conference at GHQ on Sunday.
The conference was attended by General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Corps Commanders and Principal Staff Officers
During the meeting, the Corps Commanders paid rich tributes to General Raheel Sharif for his leadership and professional acumen and lauded his services for the country.
General Raheel congratulated the Chief of Army Staff designate for his elevation to the rank of General and appointment as COAS.
General Raheel Sharif said it was a matter of great pride for him to have commanded the most battle-hardened Army in the world for three years. He appreciated the corps commanders for their cooperation during his tenure and said the successes achieved during his tenure would not have been possible without contribution by each one of them.