M A I N   N E W S

Kayani to stay, will ensure continuity: Gilani
Afzal Khan in Islamabad

The three-year extension given to Army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani will ensure that the current leadership of the government, military and judiciary remains in office till 2013, Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said here today.

Gilani announced the government’s decision to extend the term of Kayani, who was set to retire in November, during an address to the nation late last night.

“At this time, the Prime Minister will be there till 2013, the President will be there till 2013 and the (Supreme Court) Chief Justice will be there till 2013,” Gilani said in a brief chat with reporters after visiting the Pakistan Sweet Home project at Sihala in the outskirts of Islamabad.

“We have extended the Army chief’s term till 2013 too. All major stakeholders are now in a secure position and they should work under the ambit of the constitution,” he said, adding that the tenure of Kayani has been extended to ensure continuity of policies.

“Pakistan has a unique situation. We are in the middle of the war against extremism and terrorism. Stability has to be maintained and it was important for consistency and continuity.” Gilani denied that there was pressure on the government led by his Pakistan People’s Party to extend the tenure of the Army Chief.

Kayani (58), a former chief of the Inter-Services Intelligence agency, was made Army head by former military ruler Pervez Musharraf in November 2007.He has emerged as a key player in shaping Pakistan’s foreign policy.

Though political commentators often speak of Pakistan's “power troika” comprising the President, Prime Minister and army chief, insiders in the government acknowledge that it is the publicity-shy Kayani, who has emerged as the most important player in shaping Pakistan's foreign policy.





HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |