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Pakistani Army regulars were fighting in Kargil

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    Pakistani Army regulars were fighting in Kargil

    Pakistani Army regulars were fighting in Kargil, says Benazir Bhutto Bhutto

    Benazir Bhutto, former Pakistani Prime Minister and leader of the
    main opposition Pakistan People's Party has said Pakistani Army
    regulars, and not Mujahideen (Islamic warriors), were involved in
    the Kargil conflict. Describing the "humiliation" suffered by
    Pakistan as "even greater" than the debacle in the 1971
    India-Pakistan war which had led to the liberation of Bangladesh,
    Bhutto said: "It was not even Mujahideen, it was Northern Light
    Infantry... first I refused to believe it, then I saw my own
    government admitting to it."

    Army regulars and not ‘mujahideen’ were involved in Kargil: Bhutto
    LONDON, Sept 16: Former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto has
    confirmed that Pakistani army regulars and not ‘mujahideen’ were
    involved in the Kargil operations and described the ‘humiliation’
    suffered by her country as "even greater" than the debacle in 1971 Indo-
    Pak war leading to the liberation of Bangladesh.
    "...It was not even mujahideens. It was Northern Light
    Infantry....First I refused to believe it. I saw my own Government
    admitting to it," she said in an interview to PTI here.
    Stating that she was appalled why the Government carried out this
    operation, she said "it might be a narrow view. But yet there is a vast
    number of Pakistanis who believe that (premier) Nawaz Sharif did it to
    divert attention from the BBC film on his alleged corruption."
    Bhutto, chairperson of the Pakistan People’s Party, said the
    "humiliation" suffered by Pakistan in Kargil was even greater than the
    Dhaka debacle in 1971.
    During the wide ranging interview she answered questions ranging from
    the viability of the Shimla agreement to her views on the stalled Indo-
    Pak talks.Bhutto said Sharif "crossed" into Kargil believing that nuclear
    "blackmail" would work but it didn’t and "the situation went out ofhand."
    There was not a single country that stood by Pakistan at this time—
    neither Iran nor China and Islamabad had to withdraw from Kargil, shesaid.
    Attacking Sharif for his misadventure, Bhutto said instead of taking
    responsibility for his "error" and announcing withdrawal from Kargil,
    "he ran off to Washington to take dictation" from President BillClinton.
    "...On the one hand he was trying to tell Clinton I am giving you the
    credit of averting a nuclear war in the sub-continent", on the other he
    was telling the people of Pakistan I really did not want to do this
    (withdraw) but US is the super power. It is insisting that I do this,"
    Bhutto said.
    On the stalled Indo-Pak talks, Bhutto said she favoured resumption of
    the dialogue to build confidence, perhaps by opening borders between
    Muzafarabad (in PoK) and Srinagar.
    She referred to UN secretary general Kofi Anan’s appeal to India and
    Pakistan to restart the bilateral talks and said "I believe pakistan
    should take the initiative to resume the dialogue.
    "Perhaps with the Indian elections, currently on, it is difficult. But
    nonetheless it is necessary process and with the elections coming to a
    close I hope the prospects of a renewed Indo-Pakistan dialogue would berenewed."
    Asked whether the Shimla accord signed by her father Z A Bhutto and
    Indira Gandhi in 1972 could still be the basis for resolving Indo-Pak
    disputes, she said it has proved to be the most durable agreement and
    is a "very important instrument" for resolving bilateral differences.
    After the signing of this agreement there had been no war between the
    two countries since 1971, whereas before this they fought three wars,she said
    "It has prevented escalation into conflict....Kargil may have dented
    it, " Bhutto said.
    Bhutto described Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s historic bus
    journey to Lahore as positive development and said he had come there in
    good faith."When Vajpayee went on the bus drive, it showed enthusiasm on both
    sides to promote renewed dialogue between the two countries. But it
    suffered a set back because of Kargil episode," she said.
    Stressing that she would not like to see "doves in India" weakened as a
    consequence of Kargil, Bhutto said "I think they showed courage at that
    time by reaching out to Pakistan and I hope they will be in a position
    to show courage in the future too."
    She recalled that Rajiv Gandhi also had showed similar courage in 1988
    when he visited Pakistan for the SAARC summit and signed three
    agreements including one on non-attack on each other’s nuclearfacilities.
    It was unfortunate that the process was interrupted by general
    elections in India in 1989 and subsequent assassination of Rajiv
    Gandhi, she said, adding, however, after that Vajpayee’s bus journey
    was the most significant initiative for regional peace.
    Stating that Kargil was misconceived by the Pakistani premier, Bhutto
    said Sharif was out-managed, out-maneuvered and out-played by the
    Vajpayee Government.