Pakistan’s government appointed a new army chief of staff on Saturday, a boost for democracy in the coup-prone nation and the first smooth transition for the top military job in 20 years.

Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa was named to succeed Gen. Raheel Sharif, who became the first head of the army since 1996 to make way for his successor after completing a standard three-year term.

With the appointment, however, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif passed over the army’s firm favorite for the job, Gen. Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmed, who had been groomed for the top position by being appointed to key jobs previously. The prime minister also passed over others in when he choose Gen. Sharif.

Although there has long been an underlying competition between the government and the military over the exercise of power in the country, the two appear, nonetheless, to be finding ways of working together.

Read More- Wall Street Journal

Image courtesy of AP