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Blinken: ‘We haven’t seen a pullback’ of Russian forces from Ukraine border

In this photo taken from video provided by the Russian Defense Ministry Press Service on Monday, Feb. 14, 2022, soldiers practice at the Obuz-Lesnovsky training ground during the Union Courage-2022 Russia-Belarus military drills in Belarus. (Russian Defense Ministry Press Service via AP)
In this photo taken from video provided by the Russian Defense Ministry Press Service on Monday, Feb. 14, 2022, soldiers practice at the Obuz-Lesnovsky training ground during the Union Courage-2022 Russia-Belarus military drills in Belarus. (Russian Defense Ministry Press Service via AP)

Western leaders say they have not seen concrete evidence that Russia has pulled back some of its forces from its border with Ukraine despite promises by President Vladimir Putin.

“We haven’t seen a pullback,” US Secretary of State Antony Blinken tells ABC News. “He [Putin] can pull the trigger. He can pull it today. He can pull it tomorrow. He can pull it next week. The forces are there if he wants to renew aggression against Ukraine.”

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg says the alliance also sees no sign of decreasing troop levels around Ukraine.

“At the moment, we have not seen any withdrawal of Russian forces,” he says, before chairing a meeting of NATO defense ministers in Brussels. “If they really start to withdraw forces, that’s something we will welcome but that remains to be seen.”

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