Western politicians, pundits and media have responded with skepticism to Moscow’s Tuesday announcement it’s pulling away troops from the Ukrainian border, insisting that they need to “verify” the forces are heading away from Ukraine.
Earlier in the day, Russia said its military units began returning to their bases as the large-scale joint exercises were wrapping up in Belarus close to its border with Ukraine.
Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson produced one of the harshest statements, accusing Moscow of sending “mixed messages” with its behavior. Citing unspecified “intelligence” allegedly available to London, he insisted that Russia’s military activities still looked as if it was preparing to invade its neighbor.
“We’ve got Russian field hospitals being constructed near the border with Ukraine in Belarus [that] only can be construed as preparation for an invasion,” Johnson said. “You’ve got more battalion tactical groups actually been brought closer to the border with Ukraine, according to the intelligence that we’re seeing.”