Russian military says its troops back to bases after buildup

MOSCOW (AP) — The Russian military says that its troops have returned to their permanent bases after concluding massive drills, the maneuvers near Ukraine that have drawn Western concerns. The chief of the military’s General Staff said Thursday that more than 300,000 troops, nearly one-third of the nation’s 1 million member military, took part in the exercise earlier this month. Speaking during a meeting with the top military brass to discuss the drills, the general noted that they involved 35,000 combat vehicles, about 900 aircraft and 180 navy ships. The massive troop buildup near the Ukrainian border worried the West, which urged Moscow to withdraw its forces. The Russian defense minister ordered the troops pullback last week after watching maneuvers in Crimea.