331. Letter From President Ayub to President Johnson 1

Dear Mr. President,

I thank you for your letter of April 17, 1966.2

I am grateful to you for informing me of your discussions with Prime Minister Mrs. Indira Gandhi and, in particular, for urging her to keep up the effort to resolve the underlying issues which divide India and Pakistan, including the dispute over the State of Jammu & Kashmir.

We in Pakistan earnestly desire to implement the Tashkent Declaration with a view to restoring peace in the sub-continent. However, unfortunately, we have not as yet seen any tangible signs, barring verbal professions of peace, of a like desire on the part of the Indian Government and its leaders. On the other hand, plans for a major expansion of the Indian armed forces continue to be implemented as a matter of great urgency. In the meantime, the Soviet Union has decided to resume supplies of heavy military equipment to India. All this is bound to increase tension in the sub-continent.

We are not oblivious of the domestic political and economic problems which the Indian Prime Minister faces in her country in preparation [Page 635] for the forthcoming general elections in India. However, I do not see why progress towards removing the underlying cause of the India-Pakistan conflict should adversely affect her election prospects. In my judgment it should strengthen her position.

You have expressed concern about the possible effect of the recent visit of the Chinese leaders to Pakistan on relations between Pakistan and India. As you know, Chairman Liu Shao-chi came to Pakistan in response to a long-standing invitation extended to him during my visit to China last year. I see no reason why this visit should come in the way of implementing the Tashkent Agreement by either country.

With warm personal regards,

Yours sincerely,

Mohammad Ayub Khan
  1. Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Head of State Correspondence File, Pakistan, Vol. 2, Pres. Ayub Correspondence, 1/1/66–12/25/67. No classification marking. The letter was sent from President Ayub’s camp in Saidu Sharif (Swat), Pakistan.
  2. Document 317.