Amid talks, Russia met with skepticism

Associated Press A man rides his bicycle Tuesday past a body covered by a rug after fighting on the outskirts of Mariupol, Ukraine, in territory under control of the separatist government of the Donetsk People’s Republic.

KYIV, Ukraine — Russia’s pledge to scale back some military operations in Ukraine drew skepticism even as the two nations planned to return today to talks that could produce a framework for ending the war that has imposed an increasingly punishing toll.