MOSCOW May 21 Russian troops that took part in
military exercises in three provinces bordering Ukraine have
packed up and are preparing to return to their permanent bases,
the state-run news agency RIA cited the Defence Ministry as
The Kremlin said on Monday that Putin had told his defence
chief to order troops back to their bases after drills in the
Rostov, Belgorod and Bryansk regions, but NATO and the United
States have said they saw no signs of a withdrawal.
A ministry statement said the units in question had spent 24
hours dismantling field camps, packing and preparing military
vehicles and were now "moving toward train stations and
airfields," RIA reported.
(Writing by Steve Gutterman, Editing by Thomas Grove)