Scholz said he agrees that diplomatic options are “far from exhausted.” The announcement of troops being pulled back is a “good signal,” he said, adding that he hopes that “more will follow.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday that Moscow is ready for talks with the U.S. and NATO on limits for missile deployments and military transparency, in a new sign of easing East-West tensions. The statement came after Russia announced it is pulling back some troops from exercises that have raised fears of a potential invasion of Ukraine, AP reports.

Speaking after talks with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Putin said the U.S. and NATO rejected Moscow’s demand to keep Ukraine and other ex-Soviet nations out of NATO, halt weapons deployments near Russian borders and roll back alliance forces from Eastern Europe.

But the U.S. and NATO have agreed to discuss a range of security measures that Russia had previously proposed.

Putin said Russia is ready to engage in talks on limiting the deployment of intermediate range missiles in Europe, transparency of drills and other confidence-building measures but emphasized the need for the West to heed Russia’s main demands.

The statement followed the Russian Defense Ministry’s announcement of a partial pullback of troops after military drills, adding to hopes the Kremlin might not invade Ukraine imminently. The Russian military gave no details on where the troops were pulling back from, or how many.

Read more

© Copyright LaPresse