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China calls for peace in Mali


08:58, April 17, 2013

BEIJING, April 16 (Xinhua) -- China hopes the international community can continue to play an active role in consolidating security in Mali, through close coordination with the Malian side, a Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said Tuesday.

Hua Chunying's remarks at a press briefing came after France started withdrawing its troops from Mali, with plans to have just 1,000 by the end of the year.

France, aided by some 2,000 troops from Chad, began a military offensive in January in the West African country, targeting Islamist rebels who had threatened to take over Bamako, the capital of Mali.

Chad said on Sunday it will also withdraw from Mali after helping the French.

As the current peaceful situation in Mali remains fragile, there is still a long way to go before maintaining the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as peace and stability in the region, Hua said.

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