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Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Monday said he believes that retired Gen Raheel Sharif will consult the government and fulfill all his legal and constitutional obligations before taking any decision on chairing the 39-nation Islamic coalition force.

While talking to anchorperson Nadeem Malik on Samaa TV, Dar revealed that Saudi Arabia had wanted Raheel Sharif to chair the coalition force even while he was heading Pakistan Army.

"[However,] Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the government and the then Chief of Armed Staff (COAS) were in consensus that it would be a conflict of interests [to do so]," he said, adding that it would not have been suitable for Gen Raheel Sharif to be Pakistan's COAS while also heading a coalition force of 39 countries.

"He [Raheel Sharif] is currently on a visit to Saudi Arabia for his umra, and if he has received an offer in this regard, he will fill his constitutional and legal obligations before he takes it up," Dar said.

"Knowing Gen Raheel Sharif, (I can say that) he will leave nothing [up] in the air and will fulfill the prerequisites," he added.

The minister further clarified that he was not aware specifically if Gen Sharif had been made an offer or not; but if he had, he was sure Gen Sharif would make its acceptance subject to the condition that he fulfills his obligations to the Constitution.

He agreed with host Nadeem Malik that Gen Sharif would need the approval of the government if he wishes to take up the role before the expiry of a two-year restriction on his post-service employment.

Dar rescued himself from giving an opinion on the matter, saying that he will be in the core group where the development will be discussed, so it will not be fair to comment on it at this time.

"That decision is going to be taken by the government, obviously," he said.

"I am sure Raheel Sharif will come back and talk to the government, and particularly the prime minister, and the decision will be taken keeping in view the greater interest of the country and in accordance with the laws and the Constitution," he added.

Comments (28) Closed

Khanm Jan 10, 2017 12:22am

What a lame excuse..He has already taken the job..Rationalization is a process of not perceiving reality, but of attempting to make reality fit one’s emotions...Great going...

Masoud Jan 10, 2017 12:29am

I think by accepting to lead military of 39 islamic country he is doing a great job. This is an honor for Pakistan & Pakistanis. I think he will be mostly involved in reorganizing & training of the Ummah soldiers, well done.

Khanm Jan 10, 2017 12:26am

Is Dar the official spoke person for Raheel Sharif as well..Officially Raheel has nothing to do with government any more and what constitutional obligation are we talking about..Wonder if there is any legal provision..

max Jan 10, 2017 12:39am

Score settling attempt :)

Skeptic Jan 10, 2017 12:53am

Very Interesting. Mr. Dar, the Finance Minister, offering exactly his two-cents worth on Military and Foreign Policy matters??

Next perhaps the Minister of Agriculture will reassure the country on counter-terrorism, and Minister of Water and Power will be talking about the country's Nuclear arsenal??

Oh, and the designate FM is silence on the matter. Perhaps trying to come up with 140 characters on Twitter??

Pathanoo Jan 10, 2017 01:00am

General Rahil Sharif is a Good Man, Decent and a Man of Integrity. Add to it his stellar performance as COAS of Pakistan and it is clear that he would lower himslef by accepting this joke of a position and be the lackey boy of the Saudis who will try to dictate to him what he would do. If he does not; he will either have to resign or be fired. HE DOES NOT NEED THIS.

Mehtab Jan 10, 2017 01:03am

Can this alliance ever stand up against the pressing issues of Palestine, Kashmir or Myanmar ? I doubt. This alliance will only meddle in Yemen, Syria, Iraq etc Muslim world will be more in chaos unfortunately. Raheel Sharif can not make a difference on the ground however his reputation will be badly damaged.

Dr.Shamir Baloch Jan 10, 2017 01:05am

Hope he will study deeply the minutes of his contract of his appointment of leadheading a coalition force of the so called 39 countries,as Arab's are notorious when dealing with Asian's especially Pakistanis,to hold high the dignity of our nation before accepting the lucrative contract.

asif Jan 10, 2017 01:03am

Shame all knows the government have agreement and assurances to saud family to protect their rule at any cost in this they are dragging Pakistan into path of destruction

Uzair Jan 10, 2017 01:33am

Classic backtrack, aah PMLN you should weigh it before opening your mouth

Princess_of_DHUMP Jan 10, 2017 02:10am

Off-course - Gen (Retd) Raheel Sharif's "respect" for democracy and civilian supremacy enshrinied in Pakistani's constitution is famous galaxy-wide.

Mohammed Jan 10, 2017 03:31am

Mr.Dar As finance Minister this is not your part of job let the concern ministry look in to it and you better do your job which you are doing properly.

ABID Jan 10, 2017 04:19am

I think General should be allowed to lead the coalition. This is in the best interest of Pakistan. Given his recent past experience of combating extremists in Pakistan and understanding of our need to balance our relationship with Gulf States and Iran, He should be able to better influence the policy that suites Pakistan interests in this 39 country coalition.

Gh Jan 10, 2017 05:49am

Onsite job opportunities

Faisal bajwa Jan 10, 2017 05:50am

Collective security is in Pakistan's national interest and there is no better way to protect those interests by leading the coalition by our own general. (Pakistan's strong armed forces and nuclear capability gives us a leading edge over similarly strong military forces of the Muslim Countries, this makes Pakistan the natural choice for the coalition top slot.)

AHA Jan 10, 2017 05:53am

How are these business related to Finance Ministry?

Puthomadre, karachi Jan 10, 2017 06:08am

Interesting comments!!

LAHORI KID Jan 10, 2017 06:09am

Dar is a finance minister, he has no business making comments on General Raheel's decision to lead the 39 nation coalition. The General is retired, he has fulfilled his obligations by serving his country for decades.

Ajamal Jan 10, 2017 06:34am

What an ignorant government. Defence Minister said he accepted new position with government and GHQ consent. PM spokesman Mussadiq Malik said after retirement it was his personal decision. A third version has now come from Finance Minister.

Kanwarch Jan 10, 2017 06:36am

Once again it is PMLN government minister Khawaja Asif who ha's disclosed this news without anticipating the consequences for the country and it's foreign policy. According to another minister Ishaq Dar, this has not even discussed in the cabinet or kitchen cabinet of NS but still they are happy to discuss this and make this controversial. It could have been beneficial and honour for the country If done properly but to belittle the General they are doing this. They are potraying as if the General is seeking another job but the fact is that another country and infact a group of muslim countries value his expertise and want him to lead a Muslim force which should be an honour for Pakistan. Our leaders are short sighted and mean.

Imran khan Jan 10, 2017 07:17am

General Raheel Sharrif has always been in that position to give top priority to the national interest and hopefully he will do so here.

HUmaid Khan Jan 10, 2017 07:20am

He has been a great Chief of Army so he should accept the offer

Muhammad Qurban Jan 10, 2017 07:19am

An army chief getting a job with a foreign govt immediately after retirement will set a dangerous precedent. Senior armed forces officers are holders of extremely sensitive national secrets. Their selection for appointments under other govts should be a prerogative of govt of Pakistan. No direct approach should be allowed to be entertained.

zafar ahmed Jan 10, 2017 07:28am

No one will buy what Ishaq Dar said in the interview on the subject and we all know the close relationship between the two royal families !

S.M.Shabbir Jan 11, 2017 03:21pm

Mr. Raheel Sharif should not joined so called coalition, if he intends so ,then he should wait at least two years

SR Jan 11, 2017 04:07pm

Very strange, nobody of senior level has any idea about future course of action of Raheel Sharif. Not even Defence Minister, then who knows. If he is going to accept, government/institutions should accept it boldly, otherwise there is feeling probably RS doing something wrong.

Habib A. Zuberi Jan 11, 2017 06:31pm

Arabs who cannot agree among themselves, how can they accept a Pakistani General as the supreme Commander. They often look down upon Pakistanis. Be loyal to your own country and do what ever you can to bring about a better life there for all citizens. Gen Raheel Sharif enjoyed good not tarnish it.

xpakistani Jan 12, 2017 09:23am

Arabs who treat people from the sub-continent so shabbily should not have anything to do with our armed forces. They should train their own incompetent wards to defend themselves. Period.