(MOSCOW) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin may have ordered a "partial withdrawal" of troops from the Ukrainian border on Monday. Putin informed German Chancellor Angela Merkel of the move in a phone conversation on Monday, the BBC News reports. The Russian Defense Ministry released a statement saying that a motorized infantry battalion was being moved to a new location from the Rostov region, which borders Ukraine.
The U.S. State Department was unable to confirm the troop movement on Monday, however, spokesperson Jen Psaki did say that, "if reports that Russia is removing some troops from the border region are accurate, it would be a welcome preliminary step."
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