Ukraine rebels say their small weapons pullback is beginning

AP News
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Posted: Jul 19, 2015 8:51 AM

MOSCOW (AP) — Ukraine's separatist rebels say they have begun pulling back military vehicles with small-caliber weapons from most of the front line in their war with Ukrainian forces.

The claims Sunday by the Russia-backed rebels in the eastern Donetsk and Luhansk regions could not immediately be confirmed. The rebels said tanks and armored vehicles with weapons under 100mm would be pulled back three kilometers (two miles) from most of front line in eastern Ukraine.

Ukrainian Gen.-Maj. Andrei Taran dismissed the rebel claims as a deceptive.

A February agreement called for a cease-fire and for both sides to pull back heavy weaponry. Although fighting diminished, deadly clashes still continue, with three more civilians reported killed Saturday.

More than 6,400 people have been killed since the war started in April 2014, the UN says.