Nasser Khan Janjua
Nasser Khan Janjua

ISLAMABAD: The government notified on Thursday the appointment of retired Lt Gen Nasser Khan Janjua as the new National Security Adviser (NSA).

He has been appointed “with immediate effect, with the status of minister of state,” said a notification issued by the Cabinet Division, ending media speculations about the appointment.

The post was held by Sartaj Aziz who is also the Adviser on Foreign Affairs and held the status of a federal minister.

The new adviser will be based at the prime minister’s secretariat.

According to a government source, it had decided to bring in a new NSA to revitalise the national security division.

“Mr Aziz could not fully attend to both his portfolios,” the source said, sharing Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s thinking.

During the PML-N government’s two and a half years in office the National Security Committee has met only four times – the last meeting having taken place over a year ago.

The military too had reportedly been pressing the government for bringing in a new NSA.

The appointment of a retired general as the NSA is being seen as a sign of shrinking control of the civilian administration over national security which has traditionally been the military’s domain.

Published in Dawn, October 23rd, 2015

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