The Pakistan Armed Forces (Urdu: پاکستان مُسَلّح افواج, Pākistān Musallah Afwāj) are the military forces of Pakistan. They are the sixth largest in the world in terms of active military personnel and the largest among Muslim countries. The armed forces comprise three main service branches – Army, Navy, and Air Force – together with a number of paramilitary forces and the Strategic Plans Division Force. Chain of command of the military is organized under the Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (JCSC) alongside chiefs of staff of the army, navy, and air force. All of the branches work together during operations and joint missions under the Joint Staff Headquarters (JS HQ).
Since the 1963 Sino-Pakistan Agreement, the military has had close military relations with China, working jointly to develop the JF-17, the K-8, and other weapons systems. As of 2013, China was the second-largest foreign supplier of military equipment to Pakistan. Both nations also cooperate on development of nuclear and space technology programs. Their armies have a schedule for organizing joint military exercises. The military also maintains close relations with the United States, which gave Pakistan major non-NATO ally status in 2004. Pakistan gets the bulk of its military equipment from local domestic suppliers, China, and the United States.
The Pakistan Armed Forces are the best-organized institution in Pakistan, and are highly respected in civil society. Since the founding of Pakistan, the military has played a key role in holding the state together, promoting a feeling of nationhood and providing a bastion of selfless service. In addition, the Pakistan Armed Forces are the largest contributors to United Nations peacekeeping efforts, with more than 10,000 personnel deployed overseas in 2007. Other foreign deployments have consisted of Pakistani military personnel serving as military advisers in African and Arab countries. The Pakistani military has maintained combat divisions and brigade-strength presences in some of the Arab countries during the Arab–Israeli Wars, aided the Coalition forces in the first Gulf War, and took part in the Somali and Bosnian conflicts.
Pakistan Army (Urdu: پاک فوج Pak Fauj (IPA: pɑk fɒ~ɔd͡ʒ); Reporting name: PA) is the land-based force of the Pakistan Armed Forces. It came into the existence from the British Indian Army that ceased to exist following the partition of India that resulted in the independence of Pakistan on 14 August 1947. According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), it had approximately 560,000 active personnel as of 2017. In Pakistan, there is 16–23 years of age for voluntary military service; soldiers cannot be deployed for combat until age 18 according to its nation's constitution.
The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) (Urdu: پاک فِضائیہ—Pāk Fizāʾiyah, Urdu: [pɑːk fɪzɑːɪjəɦ] or alternatively Urdu: پاکیستان هاوایی فوج, reporting name: PAF) is the aerial warfare branch of the Pakistan Armed Forces, tasked primarily with the aerial defence of Pakistan, with a secondary role of providing air support to the Pakistan Army and the Pakistan Navy. The PAF has a tertiary role of providing strategic air transport and logistics capability to Pakistan. As of 2017, per IISS, the PAF has 70,000 personnel. It operates 883 aircraft.
The Pakistan Navy (Urdu: پاکستان بحریہ; Pɑkistan Bahri'a) (reporting name: PN) is the naval warfare branch of the Pakistan Armed Forces, responsible for Pakistan's 1,046 kilometres (650 mi) of coastline along the Arabian Sea, and the defence of important civilian harbours and military bases. The Pakistan Navy came into the existence after the independence of Pakistan in 1947. The President of Pakistan serves as the Supreme Commander of the Navy under Article 243 (2) of the Constitution of Pakistan, and the Chief of Naval Staff heads the Navy. Navy Day is celebrated on 8 September in commemoration of the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965.