Lt Gen Nadeem Anjum notified as new DG ISI

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Prime Minister Imran Khan has finally approved the appointment of new director general of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), nearly three weeks after the military announced a major reshuffle in its top brass.

A notification issued by the PM Office on Tuesday said: “The Prime Minister has seen and approved the appointment of Lt Gen Nadeem Ahmed Anjum, HI (M) as Director General Inter-Services Intelligence, with effect from November 20, 2021”.

The notification added that the incumbent spymaster, Lt Gen Faiz Hameed “shall continue to hold charge as the Director General Inter-Services Intelligence till November 19, 2021”.

The development comes after Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa called on PM Imran earlier today.

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The meeting was part of the ongoing consultation process between the prime minister and the army chief about the timing of change of command in ISI and selection of the new DG ISI, said the PM Office in a statement.

During this process a list of officers was received from the Ministry of Defence. Prime Minister Imran interviewed all the nominees. “[And] a final round of consultation was held between the premier and the army chief,” the statement added.

“After detailed consultative process, name of Lt Gen Nadeem Anjum was approved as new DG ISI.”

The appointment of the DG ISI has been the subject of intense debate and discussions after it emerged that the government did not notify the new spymaster despite an announcement made by the ISPR in this regard.

The development sparked rumours that the civil and military leadership was “not on the same page” vis-à-vis the issue. The government also confirmed that “proper procedure” was not followed for the appointment of the coveted post.

Also read: Govt confirms ‘stalemate’ in DG ISI’s appointment

Sources told The Express Tribune last week that the ‘impasse’ over the appointment of new ISI chief seems to be heading towards a settlement after the Prime Minister Office received a summary from the defence ministry in this regard.

On October 6, military’s media wing announced that Lt-Gen Nadeem, the Corps Commander, Karachi, was appointed as the new DG ISI, the most coveted slot within the military hierarchy after the army chief.

According to the ISPR notification, Gen Nadeem replaced Lt-Gen Faiz Hameed as head of the country’s premier spy agency in a major reshuffle that also includes the new appointments of Karachi, Peshawar and Gujranwala corps commanders.

Who is Gen Nadeem

The incoming DG ISI, as per the ISPR, was commissioned in the Light Anti-Tank Battalion of the Punjab Regiment. He has diversified experience of command, staff and instructional assignments, according to the ISPR.

He is a graduate of the Combined Arms Centre, UK; Staff College, Quetta, Advance Staff Course, UK, the NDU, Islamabad, the APCSS, USA and the Royal College of Defence Studies, UK. He holds a Master’s degree from the King’s College, London and the NDU Islamabad.

Also read: Govt downplays DG ISI appointment impasse

“General has vast experience of command in conventional as well as sub conventional threat environment,” read the ISPR statement. It added that he had been on command on both the western border and the LOC besides long service in Balochistan.

Gen Nadeem commanded an infantry brigade in South Waziristan agency, an infantry brigade in Kurram agency and Hangu during the Operation Zarb-e-Azb and he was IGFC Balochistan during the Operation Raddul Fasad.

He has been an instructor at the PMA, Staff College and the NDU. He has been commandant of the Staff College, Quetta. He has also been chief of staff of 5 Corps. His last assignment was Commander 5 Corps, Sindh. “General is keen runner and enjoys playing basketball and cricket,” the ISPR statement said.

The ISI is a premier Intelligence agency of Pakistan tasked to deal with internal and external threats. Theoretically, its head reports to the prime minister. The incoming ISI chief will have his hands full in dealing with multiple challenges particularly the Afghan situation and tensions with India.

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