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India welcomes any reduction in violence: MEA on Aleppo ceasefire

IANS | New Delhi |

Reacting to the ceasefire between the Syrian government and the rebel groups, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Thursday said India would welcome any reduction in violence and cessation of hostilities.
MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup told media: “Protection of civilians should be the number one priority. We have always stood for Syria’s territorial integrity. At the same time, selective approaches to dealing with terrorist groups have had negative effect as has been proved around the world.”
Swaroop added that there can be no military solution to the conflict and the focus should be on an inclusive Syrian-led political dialogue.
As a part of the ceasefire deal, an operation to evacuate residents and rebels from Aleppo was underway on Thursday.
Aleppo was once Syria’s largest city and industrial and financial centre, but it became a key battleground in the country’s civil war that started in 2012 as a result of the famous Arab Spring movement.