“Under cover of darkness on the evening of 13 December 1989, Nelson Mandela was smuggled into the basement garage of Tuynhuys.  He was ushered into my office, where I was accompanied by Ministers Gerrit Viljoen and Kobie Coetsee, General Willemse, the commissioner of prisons, Dr Niel Barnard, the head of the National Intelligence Service and his deputy, Mike Louw.  After the usual greetings and pleasantries, the others withdrew and left Mr Mandela and me to hold private talks….

During most of the meeting each of us cautiously sized up the other. Mandela raised the issue of the National Party’s commitment to group rights and said that he thought that this was a mistake and that it looked as though we were trying to reintroduce apartheid by the back door.  I reminded him that in March the year before he had sent President Botha a memorandum in which he had said that two broad issues would have to be addressed during negotiations: the ANC’s demand for majority rule in a unitary state and the insistence of whites on structural guarantees that majority rule would not mean domination of the white minority by blacks.  I told him that our support for group rights was simply a mechanism to provide such guarantees.  I allowed him to do most of the talking and took his measure while he spoke.  I think that we both reached more or less the same conclusions: that it would be possible for us to do business with each other.  We parted on a friendly note and with the assurance that we would meet again fairly soon for another meeting – and next time we would also discuss his release.”

“The  Last Trek: a new Beginning:” FW de Klerk, pp. 156-158