India, Serbia and some other countries are ready to deliver humanitarian aid to the stressed civilians of Aleppo, one of the largest Syrian cities.

With the Syrian regime army and rebels, backed by the ISIS, fighting for control of the city, Russia’s Interfax News Agency said: “China, Azerbaijan, Serbia, India and Kazakhstan intend to join Russia’s humanitarian operation in Aleppo.” A couple of days ago, the agency reported that Armenia and China planned to expand their participation with their Russian allies in the war-ravaged West Asian country, apart from sending humanitarian aid to Aleppo.

India and Serbia, considered as Russia’s friends, have decided to send humanitarian aid to the Syrian people after considering the current political and social situation in the country. As per the report published by the Russian agency, war has taken a toll on this historical Syrian city, with 1.35 million people living in the government-held neighbourhoods in Aleppo.

Meanwhile, Kremlin said over the weekend that it aimed to ‘liberate’ Syria from jihadists as soon as possible. The concerned Russian authorities justified its military intervention in Syria, stressing that Moscow would liberate the war-torn nation’s territory from rebels while keeping President Bashar al-Assad in power.

Speaking at a press conference, senior Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that only two options were there in Syria – either President Assad remains in power or rebels take over. “Either Assad is in Damascus, or al-Nusra is. There is no third option here,” he added.

The spokesperson made clear that Russia would not step away from its involvement in the Syrian conflict, stressing: “We must do everything possible to prevent the partition of the country since this could lead to the most catastrophic results for the whole region.”

Peskov further assured the international community that Moscow would try hard to help the Asad government reach a political settlement (in order to end the five-year-long war). At the same time, Peskov urged the global community not to “underestimate the role of the Russian operation in ensuring such an outcome”. He slammed countries calling for Assad’s ouster, saying it was unfortunate that some people were “flirting with the Devil and trying to get rid of Assad through the hands of terrorists.” He advised those people to stop “carelessly saying that Assad must go”.

In the last five years, more than 300,000 Syrian people have been killed as the widespread protest movement against Assad’s rule has turned into a multi-front war between rebels, jihadists, Kurds and regime forces.

Koushik Das, based in the Indian capital of New Delhi, is a senior news editor with more than 15 years of experience. He also runs a blog - Boundless Ocean of Politics. E-Mail: [email protected]