LONDON: Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa arrived in the United Kingdom on an official visit early on Thursday morning, the military’s media wing said.

The army chief will attend the passing-out parade at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, an Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) press release said on Thursday. The army chief will be chief guest at the ceremony.

During the visit, the COAS will also call on the military leadership of the UK, the media affairs wing of the armed forces said.

Sources said the visit was “a standardised official military visit” in keeping with an annual tradition.

Due to the pandemic, the army chief had not visited Sandhurst over the last couple of years, but had been a regular visitor each year since he took over as head of the army.

The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS) is one of several military academies of the United Kingdom and is the British Army’s initial officer training centre.

All British Army officers, including late-entry officers who were previously Warrant Officers, as well as other men and women from overseas, are trained at the academy. Sandhurst is the British Army equivalent of the Britannia Royal Naval College and the Royal Air Force College Cranwell.

The RMAS was formed on the site of the former Royal Military College in 1947 when it amalgamated with the Royal Military Academy in Woolwich.

Following the ending of National Service in the UK and the closing of the Mons Officer Cadet School in Aldershot in 1972, the RMAS became the sole establishment for male initial officer training in the British Army.

Published in Dawn, August 12th, 2022

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