Vladimir Putin absent as military brass announce troops' pull out from Kherson
- As Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Gen. Sergei Surovikin, Russia’s chief commander in Ukraine, stiffly recited the reasons for the retreat in front of the cameras on Nov. 9, Putin was touring a neurological hospital in Moscow, watching a doctor perform brain surgery.
When Russia's top military brass announced in a televised appearance that they were pulling troops out of the key city of Kherson in southern Ukraine, one man missing from the room was President Vladimir Putin.
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