This conversation happened when Kargil war was going on and R&AW(India’s external intelligence agency) was able to tap a phone call and recored the conversation between Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan army chief and Chief of General Staff Lt Gen Mohammed Aziz. It was later forwarded to the Indian govt and then it was released by the External Affair Ministry of India.
The conversation consists of various issues of Line of Control to UN’s role in India-Pakistan issue, to Mi-17 helicopter crashing on May 17, 1998. This conversation made clear that Pakistani army was involved in Kargil war despite of their blaming it on the Mujahideen and saying that Mujahideen was acting on their own.
Gen Musharraf: Has this Mi-17 not fallen in our area?
Lt Gen Aziz: No, sir. This has fallen in their area. We have not claimed it. We have got it claimed through the mujahideen. (May 29).
Following are excerpts from the conversations:
Gen Musharraf: What is the news on that side?
Lt Gen Aziz: There is no change in the ground situation. They have started rocketing and strafing. That has been upgraded a little. It had happened yesterday also and today. Today high-altitude bombing has been done… Our stand should be that all these bombs are falling on our side.
Gen Musharraf: That briefing to Mian Sahib (Nawaz Sharief) that we did, was the forum the same as where we had done previously? There at Jamshed’s place.
Lt Gen Aziz: No. In Mian Sahib’s office… Today for the last two hours the BBC has been continuously reporting on the air strikes by India. Keep using this — let them keep dropping bombs. As far as internationalisation is concerned, this is the fastest this has happened. You may have seen in the press about UN Secretary General Kofi Annan’s appeal that both countries should sit and talk.
Gen Musharraf: This is very good.
Lt Gen Aziz: Yes, this is very good.
The above conversation on May 26 also took note of the protests made by Indian officials to the Pakistani authorities about the support — logistical and otherwise — that Islamabad provided to the infiltrators holed up in Kargil and other areas, demanding its immediate withdrawal.
Excerpts from the May 29 conversation:
Gen Musharraf: Idea on LoC.
Lt Gen Aziz: Hint is that given that the LoC has many areas where the interpretation of either side is not what the other side believes. So comprehensive deliberation is required. So that can be worked out by DGMOs.
Gen Musharraf: If they [the Indians] are assured that we are here from a long period, we have been sitting here for long, like in the beginning, the matter is the same — no post was attacked and no post was captured. The situation is that we are along our defensive Line of Control. If it is not in his [Foreign Minister Sartaj Aziz’s] knowledge, then discuss it altogether. Emphasise that for years, we are here only. Yes, this point should be raised. We are sitting on the same LoC for a long period.
Lt Gen Aziz: This is their weakness. They are not agreed on the demarcation under UN’s verification, whereas we are agreed. We want to exploit it.
Gen Musharraf: This is in Simla Agreement that we cannot go for UN intervention.
Lt Gen Aziz: Our neighbour does not accept their presence or UNMOGIP arrangement for survey of the area. So we can start from the top, from 9842 [NJ 9842]. On this line, we can give them logic but in short, the recommendation for Sartaj Aziz Saheb is that he should make no commitment in the first meeting on the military situation. And he should not even accept a ceasefire, because if there is a ceasefire, then vehicles will be moving [on Drass-Kargil highway]. In this regard they have to use their own argument that whatever is interfering with you, that we don’t know, but there is no justification about tension on the LoC. No justification. We want to give them this type of brief so that he does not get into any specifics.”