Russian soldiers leave the Ukraine border – level 3
Russia’s deployment of more than 100,000 troops, as well as tanks, warplanes, and warships, to Crimea and other areas near the Ukrainian border over the last month had raised fears that Russia might be planning another attack on its neighbor.
For weeks, Russia rejected Ukraine and its western allies’ calls to de-escalate the tensions, saying that the troops were in the area for maneuvers. On Friday, Russia said that it had begun pulling thousands of troops back from areas near the Ukrainian border. The Defense Ministry released a video showing the troops returning to their bases, and the Black Sea Fleet later reported that its ships have also been redeployed.
However, concerns remain about how complete the action will be and whether tensions could flare again. Russia said that the pullback would be completed by May 1; however, it will leave the equipment in the area ahead of autumn training operations. These include tanks, of one of the units involved in the maneuvers.
Difficult words: de-escalate (to reduce the intensity of a conflict or potentially violent situation), maneuver (a training), redeploy (to transfer from one area or activity to another), flare (to happen in a sudden and often violent way).
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