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“I don’t read anything into it until I see what their actions are,” Biden said of Russia’s pledge. Pentagon spokesman John Kirby echoed this stance, saying that “nobody should be fooling” themselves by believing the Kremlin’s claim. Kirby confirmed an assessment by a top U.S. general that a small number of Russian troops had moved away from Kyiv but said officials believe it is “a repositioning, not a real withdrawal.” A major offensive in other parts of Ukraine is still possible, he said.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said late Tuesday that news from the negotiations was “positive” but that Kyiv has “no reason to trust" Moscow’s assurances. “These signals do not silence the explosion of Russian shells,” he said.
During the peace talks, which took place in Istanbul, Ukrainian representatives outlined a proposal that included an agreement by their country to drop its bid to join NATO and a 15-year timeline for negotiations with Russia over the status of Crimea. Still, as diplomats met in Turkey, the fighting continued in Ukraine.