Russian leader Vladimir Putin has secured some wins in his confrontation with the West over Ukraine, but it's too early to discern an end to a crisis that could yet morph into a new Cold War even if conflict is averted, Kremlin watchers said.

The United States has dismissed Moscow's assertion it was partially pulling back troops massed near Ukraine, saying that Russia was instead still building them up and remained positioned for an imminent invasion if it chose.

Moscow, which denies that, accuses the West of ignoring its key security demands, but top diplomat Sergey Lavrov told Putin on Monday to allow more time for diplomacy even as Putin said he did not want to be dragged into tortuous negotiations.