Army chief condoles ‘friend of Pakistan’ John McCain’s death

RAWALPINDI: Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa has expressed condolence on demise of veteran US politician John McCain who was an advocate of strong Pakistan-US relations.

In his condolence message, the COAS said: “McCain was a distinguished war veteran and an accomplished representative of his country. A friend of Pakistan who believed in great potential of Pak-US relations for common good of both countries.”

Army Chief John McCain

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi also said in a statement that McCain had “always stood for strong Pakistan-US relations and a cooperative approach for promoting peace and building stability in the region.”

US Senator John McCain, a former prisoner of war in Vietnam who ran for president in 2008 as a maverick Republican and became a prominent critic of President Donald Trump, died on Saturday at the age of 81.

A senator from Arizona for more than three decades, McCain had been suffering from brain cancer since July 2017 and had not been at the U.S. Capitol this year.

McCain frequently battled with Trump and his family has said he did not want the president to attend his funeral.

All five living former US presidents – Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Jimmy Carter – paid tribute to McCain’s courage and character.

McCain, the son and grandson of U.S. Navy admirals, was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1982 after more than two decades of Navy service.

Arizona next elected him to the U.S. Senate in 1986 to replace Barry Goldwater, the 1964 Republican presidential nominee revered by conservatives.

In running for president in 2008, McCain tried to succeed fellow Republican Bush at time when the United States was mired in wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and stuck in a financial crisis.

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