The United States
has refused to believe that Russian forces are withdrawing from Ukraine despite
Moscow’s claims. A senior official of the Biden administration told the media
Wednesday that claims of Russian withdrawal from Ukraine are false. However, no
details or reasons were provided.

“So yesterday, the
Russian government said it was withdrawing troops from the border with Ukraine.
They received a lot of attention for that claim, both here and around the
world. But we know now they were false,” the official said, according to
Reuters. The US official further claimed that Russia had, in effect, increased
its troop presence in the area adding 7,000 more soldiers.

Also Read | US: Russia adds troops near Ukraine despite drawdown claims

The official’s
claim was echoed by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. At an interview with
MSNBC, Blinken said “critical units” were being moved towards the border.

“There’s what
Russia says. And then there’s what Russia does. And we haven’t seen any pullback
of forces,” Blinken said adding, “We continue to see critical units moving
toward the border, not away from the border.”

Earlier this week,
US President Joe Biden said nearly 150,000 had encircled Ukraine.

The United States’
statement on increased troop activity comes after Russian defence ministry
officials said Wednesday that forces near Ukraine were pulling back. Moscow
also published a video showing Russian forces leaving the Crimean Peninsula.

“Units of the Southern
Military District, having completed their participation in tactical exercises,
are moving to their permanent deployment points,” the Russian defence ministry

Following reports
of withdrawal Wednesday, China accused the US of hyping up the possibility of a
Russian invasion of Ukraine. “For days, the US has been playing up the threat
of war and creating an air of tension,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson
Wang Wenbin said at a press conference.

“This has gravely
impacted the economy, social stability and people’s lives in Ukraine, and
obstructed dialogue and negotiations between concerned parties.” The US, on the
other hand, has accused China of giving “tacit support” of military
intervention in Ukraine.