Pakistan Govt on Friday Lt.Gen (R) Asif Yasin Malik as new defence secretary in place of Nargis Sethi who had been given the additional charge of defence ministryís top bureaucrat in January this year.
Sethi was assigned the job after the dismissal of Lt-Gen (R) Naeem Khalid Lodhi at the peak of a civil-military standoff over the infamous memogate affair.
Malik retired from active service last December as commander of the Peshawar-based 11 Corps. While commanding the corps, he oversaw counter-insurgency operations in tribal areas.The new defence secretary, who had attended training courses in the US, will hit the ground running with signing next week a bilateral MoU with the US on transit of cargo.
The MoU was approved by the federal cabinet this week.
Gen Malikís colleagues describe him as a soldier to the core and a no-nonsense man.