MOSCOW - Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman said on Tuesday that there are no Russian military forces in eastern Ukraine and that any claims of their presence there are absurd.

"This is an absurd assertion, there are no Russian troops there," the spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, told a conference call. He suggested that Western governments were deliberately ignoring Russian assurances on this score, saying "one can only express puzzlement that they prefer not to hear all the statements of the Russian side."


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