Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has left for London after concluding his two-day trip to Egypt on Wednesday, where he attended the COP27 climate conference.

The update was shared by Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb in a tweet, saying that the premier had left for the British capital on a "private visit via a private flight".

With PML-N supremo and elder brother Nawaz Sharif residing in London since November 2019 and the party's vice-president, Maryam Nawaz joining her father in October, the premier's trip to the metropolis has given rise to speculation that important decisions would be made during the visit.

This is PM Shehbaz's third trip to London since he assumed the country's top office in April and comes ahead of the appointment of the new army chief, with Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa's tenure set to end on November 29.

Earlier, it was reported that PM Shehbaz would consult Nawaz on the appointment and Power Minister Khurram Dastgir had, in fact, substantiated the reports.

Taking exception to the reports, PTI chief Imran Khan had castigated the PM for discussing the appointment of the next army chief with his elder brother, terming it a violation of the Official Secrets Act and a breach of the PM’s oath of office.

Earlier, the premier had visited London in September, primarily to represent Pakistan at Queen Elizabeth II's funeral.

It was also reported at the time that PM Shehbaz had consulted Nawaz on an appointment in November — an apparent reference to the selection of the new army chief.

Moreover, he was accompanied by PML-N leader and now finance minister Ishaq Dar on his return.

Dar, who had been in a self-exile in London for nearly five years, replaced PML-N's Miftah Ismail as the country's finance czar following months of speculation that he was favoured by some of the party's top leaders for the post.

Prior to that, the PM, along with a delegation of federal ministers, had first visited his brother in May. It was reported at the time that the PM-led delegation had sought Nawaz's guidance on key decisions, including whether or not to go for early elections.

Eventually, the ruling coalition decided against opting for snap polls and giving into PTI chief Imran Khan's demand.

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