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Pakistani Army Chief To Step Down At End Of Term

General Raheel Sharif
General Raheel Sharif

Pakistan's powerful army chief has said that he will step down at the end of his three-year term in November.

General Raheel Sharif is considered by many to be Pakistan's most powerful man, and he has led a military campaign against some Islamist militants.

The general has pledged that efforts to combat terrorism "will continue with full vigor and resolve" after he retires, a tweet on January 25 by the army spokesman said.

Under his watch, the military has been given authority to try civilians suspected of terrorism in secret military courts.

General Sharif is said to have been personally involved in efforts to bring the Afghan Taliban into peace talks with Afghanistan, though those efforts have stalled.

Pakistan's past two military chiefs had sought extensions of their terms instead of stepping down, with General Pervez Musharraf staging a coup to topple Nawaz Sharif during a previous term as prime minister.

Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters