Russia claims US troops in eastern Ukraine

AP News
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Posted: Apr 23, 2015 1:42 PM

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia's Defense Ministry says U.S. military instructors are training Ukrainian national guardsmen in urban fighting techniques in the eastern regions where Ukrainian forces and Russia-backed separatist rebels have fought for the past year.

The claim Thursday by ministry spokesman Gen.-Maj. Igor Konashenkov came one day after the U.S. State Department claimed Russia has deployed air-defense systems in eastern Ukraine and that combined Russia-separatist forces are maintaining artillery and rocket launchers in violation of a shaky cease-fire deal.

Konashenkov denied those claims and said U.S. military instructors are working in the vicinity of the cities of Mariupol, Artemivsk and Volnovakha.

U.S. paratroopers last week arrived in western Ukraine to train national guard units.