Russia’s President Putin orders troops near Ukraine border to return ‘immediately’ to their permanent bases.
Mr Putin gave an order to Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu to return troops which participated in military exercises in Rostov-on-Don, Belgorod and Bryansk regions to permanent bases.
‘Over the end of the planned spring stage of military training envisaging their redeployment and particularly held at firing ranges in Rostov-on-Don, Belgorod and Bryansk regions Russian President Vladimir Putin gave an order to Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu to bring back troops that participated in the war games to their permanent bases and continue combat training at neighboring firing ranges,’ the presidential press service said.
Correspondents say the removal of some 40,000 Russian troops near the Ukrainian border could help de-escalate the Ukraine crisis.
(upd) However, a NATO military officer in Brussels said the military alliance had seen no sign of the Russian troops returning to their bases.
‘We haven’t seen any movement to validate (the report),’ the officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters.