MOSCOW — President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday that Russia has withdrawn its forces from its border with Ukraine, where NATO has said there were about 40,000 Russian troops in recent weeks, the Interfax news agency reported.
"We're always being told that our forces on the Ukrainian border are a concern. We have withdrawn them. Today they are not on the Ukrainian border, they are in places where they conduct their regular tasks on training grounds," Putin was quoted as saying.
The statement was quickly knocked down by the Pentagon.
"We have seen no change in the Russian force posture along the border," Pentagon spokesperson Col. Steve Warren said Wednesday.