Home Latest News P.M. Khan Notifies Lt. Gen. Nadeem Anjum as New ISI Chief

P.M. Khan Notifies Lt. Gen. Nadeem Anjum as New ISI Chief

by Newsweek Pakistan

Lt. Gen. Nadeem Ahmed Anjum Sheikh. Photo courtesy ISPR

In statement, P.M. Office claims premier interviewed all candidates for the post before making his decision

The Prime Minister’s Office on Tuesday formally notified the appointment of Lt. Gen. Nadeem Anjum as the next chief of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), replacing incumbent Lt. Gen. Faiz Hameed, with the position to take effect from Nov. 20.

“The prime minister has seen and approved the appointment of Lt. Gen. Nadeem Ahmed Anjum as director general Inter-Services Intelligence, with effect from Nov. 20, 2021, from the panel of officers,” read a notification issued by the P.M. Office. “The incumbent director general ISI shall continue to hold charge … till Nov. 19, 2021,” it added

Separately, the Prime Minister’s Office issued a statement on Twitter confirming that Chief of Army Staff Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa had called on Prime Minister Imran Khan earlier in the day as part of their “ongoing consultation process” on the timing of change of command in the ISI and the selection of the spy agency’s new chief.

“During this process, a list of officers was received from Ministry of Defense,” it said, adding that Khan had “interviewed” all the nominees. “A final round of consultation was held between the prime minister and the chief of Army staff today. After this detailed consultative process, name of Lt. Gen. Nadeem Anjum was approved as new DG ISI,” it said, adding that he would take charge on Nov. 20.

The P.M. Office statement has raised eyebrows among the media, as it appears to directly contradict claims by Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain from earlier this month. On Oct. 14, in a post on Twitter, he had claimed that “certain segments” were misrepresenting the “routine meetings” between the prime minister and the candidates for DG ISI, and no interviews were planned.

Lt. Gen. Nadeem Anjum currently heads the Corps V in Karachi.

The issuance of the P.M. Office notification brings to an end nearly three weeks of speculation over an alleged standoff between the security establishment and the government over the appointment of a new spymaster. On Oct. 6, the Army had announced that former ISI chief Lt. Gen. Faiz Hameed had been appointed the new Commander Peshawar Corps, with Lt. Gen. Anjum replacing him. However, the P.M. Office delayed its notification, with the information minister claiming that the prime minister wanted to follow “legal procedures” before it was issued, suggesting the initial ISPR announcement had been illegal.

Senior members of the federal cabinet had claimed that the prime minister had informed them that he wanted to retain Lt. Gen. Faiz in light of the situation in neighboring Afghanistan. However, opposition lawmakers had alleged that he wanted to retain an official who could help him politically.

Security experts have maintained that there is no “legal procedure” for the appointment of the ISI chief, as it is neither mentioned in the Constitution, nor the Army Act. All previous appointments have been made “per tradition,” with the Army chief proposing three names to the prime minister for the post.

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