News / Europe

US, NATO Raise Doubts Russia Pulled Back from Ukraine Border

FILE - Russian military vehicles and army tents are seen in a field outside the village of Severny in Belgorod region near the Russian-Ukrainian border, April 25, 2014.
FILE - Russian military vehicles and army tents are seen in a field outside the village of Severny in Belgorod region near the Russian-Ukrainian border, April 25, 2014.
The United States and NATO say, so far, there are no indications some 40,000 Russian forces are pulling back from the border with Ukraine, despite claims by the Russian president.

Speaking to reporters in Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin said he had urged pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine to postpone a referendum on secession set for Sunday. He also insisted that Russian military forces had been withdrawn from the Ukranian border.

Aboard Air Force One, White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters a Russian pullback would be a positive step.

“We would certainly welcome a meaningful and transparent withdrawal of Russian military forces from the border," he said. "That's something that we have sought for quite some time.”

But Earnest says there’s no evidence to back up Russia’s claims.

Pentagon Spokesman, Colonel Steve Warren says, “I can tell you we have seen no change in the Russian force posture along the Ukrainian border.”

Warren says if Russian troops were on the move, the U.S. would know.

While some express hope, U.S. lawmakers are skeptical as well, the Senate Intelligence Committee’s Dan Coats, a Republican, telling VOA Putin's actions will speak louder than any words.

“If he [Putin] continues to encourage the pro-Russian chaos-makers in eastern Ukraine in order to disrupt or influence that election, pulling the troops back would just be a symbol of something that we shouldn’t take a whole lot of confidence that this is going to solve the problem,” he said.

Stephen Blank at the American Foreign Policy Council says Putin’s comments - especially those asking pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine to postpone an independence referendum that’s just days away - might be a sign Russia is starting to feel squeezed.

“Well, it’s a move to take the pressure off because if there’s another referendum, there will be more sanctions and these sanctions have begun to hurt,“ he said.

But Blank says Russia will continue to try to destabilize Ukraine:

“As long as Putin is president, they cannot accept a sovereign Ukraine that is inclined to the West," he said.

In the meantime, Ukraine’s border guard has already received U.S. shipments of non-lethal equipment while aid to the Ukrainian army is still in the works.

Jeff Seldin

Jeff works out of VOA’s Washington headquarters covering a wide variety of subjects, from the nature of the growing terror threat in Northern Africa to China’s crackdown on Tibet and the struggle over immigration reform in the United States. You can follow Jeff on Twitter at @jseldin or on Google Plus.

You May Like

As US Strikes Syria, China Sees Parallels at Home

Beijing is debating how much support to give international coalition against IS militants and trying to figure out how many Chinese nationals may have joined group overseas More

CDC: Ebola Could Infect 1.4 Million by January

US health officials say if efforts to curb the outbreak are not increased, cases will soar dramatically by early next year More

Video USAID Provides $231 Million for Girls Education in 5 Countries

US Agency for International Development partners with celebrities to call attention to importance of education for girls worldwide More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: cheah from: penang
May 09, 2014 2:27 AM
How can you expect Russia to completely withdraw the troops massed on its border when USA and EU accomplice had broken the mutual trusts that existed before and broken by USA through its covert CIA interference in Ukraine that caused this crisis in the first place in the name of a false flag in the name of freedom ,human rights etc etc .
No one country can trust when USA (the champion of democracy) when in fact it does not respect that a democratically elected leader by the people decision to do what is good for his nation's interests.??.... just because the leader does things that is against US interest....IS this a champion of democracy or dictator of democracy...??
US people are peace-loving and do not want US dominated NWO but the ruling elites in the White house and military establishments wanted to implement the NWO agendas.
Anyone can disagree and said I am anti -USA but I respect your views so please respect mine too. This is freedom of speech too and expression of view


by: Wiktor Protsenko from: Kyiv
May 08, 2014 11:12 AM
In its unannounced war against Ukraine, Russia relies on covert operations which fall squarely within the definition of "international terrorism" under 18 U.S.C. § 2331. Specifically, armed operatives of Russia, acting under disguise, attempt to influence the policy of Ukrainian government by intimidation or coercion. They also try to affect the conduct of a government by assassinations and kidnapping, taking by force government buildings, police posts and military bases of Ukraine.

This activity is being conducted on large scale and over prolonged time period, despite condemnation by the USA, G-7, NATO, EU and UN. Please sign the petition urging the White House to officially designate Russia as "State sponsor of terrorism” - http://wh.gov/lwuL9 Such status of country would outlaw business of American companies with Russia. Even considering of the petition by Senate and President of USA creating great inconvenience Russian authorities.


by: meanbill from: USA
May 07, 2014 7:10 PM
"Know your enemy, and know yourself, and you can win a hundred battles without losing a single man" .. From "the Art of War" by Sun Tzu.. -- Putin read and studied the book to win Crimea and maybe a third of Ukraine, (and if the US and NATO read it), they must not have understood what they read?

The US and NATO won many battles with a great loss of men, in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, _ (BUT?) _ lost the Vietnam and Afghan war, and didn't win the Iraq war? -- (Just maybe, they could win a war by reading), "The Art of War" by Sun Tzu? --

The US and NATO arrogance in overestimating their forces strength, (and underestimating their enemies will to continue fighting), until the US and NATO forces give up, and go home?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
NASA’s MAVEN Probe Enters Mars Orbiti
X
September 22, 2014 9:20 PM
NASA’s newest Mars probe, called MAVEN, has successfully entered its designated orbit around the Red Planet. Scientists will use its sophisticated instruments to try to learn what happened to the atmosphere Mars had a few billion years ago. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video NASA’s MAVEN Probe Enters Mars Orbit

NASA’s newest Mars probe, called MAVEN, has successfully entered its designated orbit around the Red Planet. Scientists will use its sophisticated instruments to try to learn what happened to the atmosphere Mars had a few billion years ago. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video For West Ukraine City, Conflict Far Away Yet Near

The western Ukrainian city of Lviv prides itself on being both physically and culturally close to Western Europe. The Russian-backed separatists in the eastern part of the country are 1,200 kilometers away, and seemingly even farther away in their world view. Still, as VOA’s Al Pessin reports, the war is having an impact in Lviv.
Video

Video Saving Global Fish Stocks Starts in the Kitchen

With an estimated 90 percent of the world’s larger fish populations having already vanished, a growing number of people in the seafood industry are embracing the concept of sustainable fishing and farming practices. One American marine biologist turned restaurateur in Thailand is spreading the word among fellow chefs and customers. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Chinese Admiral Key in China’s Promotion of Sea Links

China’s President last week wrapped up landmark visits to India, Sri Lanka and Maldives, part of a broader campaign to promote a new “Maritime Silk Road” in Asia. The Chinese government’s promotion efforts rely heavily on the country’s best-known sailor, a 15th century eunuch named Zheng He. VOA's Bill Ide reports from the sailor’s hometown in Yunnan on the effort to promote China’s future by recalling its past.
Video

Video Experts Fear Ebola Outbreak ‘Beyond Our Capability to Contain’

Each day brings with it new warnings about the deadly Ebola outbreak already blamed for killing more than 2,600 people across West Africa. And while countries and international organizations like the United Nations are starting to come through on promises of help for those most affected, the unprecedented speed with which the virus has spread is raising questions about the international response. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from Washington.
Video

Video Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Town

A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Difficult Tactical Battle Ahead Against IS Militants in Syria

The U.S. president has ordered the military to intensify its fight against the Islamic State, including in Syria. But how does the military conduct air strikes in a country that is not a U.S. ally? VOA correspondent Carla Babb reports from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid