Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) of the Pakistan Army, General Raheel Sharif, NI (M) is scheduled to visit Sri Lanka on Friday, the Ministry of Defence said today. The Pakistan army chief is making the visit upon an invitation extended by the Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva.
During his five-day visit, General Raheel Sharif is expected to call on President Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, State Minister of Defence, Secretary to Ministry of Defence, Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka, Chief of Defence Staff, Commanders of the Navy and Air Force and also visit several military establishments, army media sources state.
Born into a military family in Quetta in June 1956 General Raheel Sharif, Nishan-e-Imtiaz (Military) was commissioning with 54th Pakistan Military Academy Long Course in October 1976.
His father Major Muhammad Sharif was a war veteran of Second World War. His elder brother Major Shabir Sharif (Shaheed) made his mark in the history of Pakistan by first earning Sitara-i-Jurat in 1965 war and then ‘Nishan-e-Haider’ the highest gallantry award of Pakistan for sacrificing his life in the most heroic manner in 1971 Indo-Pakistan War. Captain Mumtaz Sharif, his second elder brother is also a war veteran and recipient of ‘Sitara-i-Basalat’.
The General is an alumnus of Government College Lahore and graduate of Pakistan Military Academy. He is also a graduate of the Canadian Staff College, National Defence University Pakistan and Royal College of Defence Studies, United Kingdom. (Colombo Gazette)