Islamabad, July 24(ANI): Pakistan Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani has said that all "major stakeholders" in the country, the President, the Prime Minister, the Supreme Court Chief Justice and the Army Chief, are in a "secure position" until 2013.
Gilani said that the service of Army Chief General Ashfaq Kayani had been extended until 2013 to ensure the continuity of policies.
"Pakistan has a unique position. We are in the middle of a war against extremism. Stability has to be maintained and it was important for consistency and continuity," The Daily Times quoted Gilani, as saying.
"I want to give a message to the nation that at this time, the Prime Minister, President, CJP and COAS are now in a secure position till 2013. They must now work within the ambit of Constitution," he added.
He also denied reports that General Kayani's tenure was extended under US pressure, and said that "no third party was involved".
"Keeping in view the situation in war on terror, we have already given extension to the ISI director general and some other generals and may do so in future as well," he added.
The three-year extension is only the second such incident in Pakistan's history when a civilian regime has increased the services of the Chief of the Army Staff (COAS).
The first such extension was given by former President Iskandar Mirza to General Ayub Khan.
The three Army Chiefs-Field Marshal Ayub Khan, General Zia-ul-Haq and General Pervez Musharraf had extended their own terms while holding the office of the President. (ANI)