About 100 Semenovka residents later vented their anger against the central government, demanding that Ukrainian forces cease their offensive against the separatists and withdraw from the region. Speakers at the rally also urged residents to boycott the presidential vote.
While fighting raged in Ukraine, Russia's Defense Ministry said Thursday its forces were leaving the regions near Ukraine as part of a massive military pullout ordered by President Vladimir Putin. It said four trainloads of weapons and 15 Il-76 heavy-lift transport planes had already left the Belgorod, Bryansk and Rostov regions.
NATO had estimated Russia has 40,000 troops along the border with Ukraine.
Gen. Philip Breedlove, NATO's supreme commander in Europe, told reporters in Brussels that some Russian military movements had been detected but it was too early to assess their size or importance. He said a very large and capable Russian force still remained close to Ukraine.
In Kiev, Yatsenyuk described Russia's announcement of troops pull-out as "bluffing." "Even if the troops are withdrawing, Russian authorities are still assisting the armed terrorists who were trained in Russia," he said.
Russia's Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich on Thursday rejected Yatsenyuk's claims of Russian interference in the east as unfounded.
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Putin's pullout order and his remarks welcoming Ukraine's presidential election Sunday reflected an attempt to ease tensions with the West over Ukraine and avoid a new round of Western sanctions. He has ignored the plea of some of the rebels in eastern Ukraine to join Russia.
The United States and the European Union imposed travel bans and asset freezes on members of Putin's entourage after Russia annexed Crimea in March. The U.S. and EU have warned that more crippling sanctions against entire sectors of the Russian economy could follow if Russia tries to grab more land from Ukraine or attempts to derail Ukraine's election.
Russia has pushed for guarantees that Ukraine will not join NATO and has advocated constitutional reforms that would give broader powers to Ukraine's regions, which would maintain Moscow's clout in the Russian-speaking eastern regions that form the nation's industrial heartland.
The Kremlin, meanwhile, angrily protested the detention of journalists working for Russian media outlets in Ukraine. Graham Phillips, a Briton working for state-controlled English language television station RT, was detained earlier this week by Ukrainian forces, but was released Wednesday.
Two correspondents with the Moscow-based Life News television, who were also detained, have remained in Ukrainian custody and face accusations of aiding armed insurgents - a claim Putin has dismissed as "rubbish and nonsense."