ISLAMABAD: Former foreign minister Sahabzada Yaqub Ali Khan breathed his last on early Tuesday morning. He was 95.
Sahabzada Yaqub Ali Khan was born in 1920 in British India’s Rampur state. Sahabzada Yaqub Khan studied at Col. Brown Cambridge School in Dehra Dun and Prince of Wales Royal Indian Military College, Dehra Dun. He was commissioned on 22 December 1940 and attached to 18th King Edward’s Own Cavalry, part of 3rd Indian Motor Brigade.
After independence, he opted for Pakistan where he went on to enjoy a distinguished career in the Pakistani Army. Rising to the rank Lieutenant General, Yaqub Khan served as Chief of General Staff, Commander Eastern Command, and Governor of East Pakistan.
On retiring from the Army he embarked on a career as a diplomat, serving as Ambassador to France, the United States and Soviet Union from 1972 to 1982.
He held the most senior and prestigious military and government assignments in the Pakistan Government, and was also the primary the international face of Pakistan for three decades, first served as the Foreign minister, military government of President General Zia-ul-Haq from 1982 to 1991 until the dying days of Cold War, and then also served as the caretaker Foreign minister from 1996 to 1997.
Sahabzada Yaqub Khan is the founding chairman of the Aga Khan University Board of Trustees, which he chaired for almost two decades until his retirement in 2001.