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S.Ossetia says Georgian drone shot down over capital

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A Georgian unmanned reconnaissance plane was shot down early on Thursday over the South Ossetian capital, a local Interior Ministry official said.
TSKHINVALI, August 28 (RIA Novosti) - A Georgian unmanned reconnaissance plane was shot down early on Thursday over the South Ossetian capital, a local Interior Ministry official said.

"A Georgian drone was flying from south to north over Tskhinvali at 00.10 Moscow time (20.10 GMT). South Ossetian military units opened fire at the UAV and shot it down," said acting Interior Minister Mikhail Mindzayev.

He also said several illegal armed groups were operating near the capital under orders from Georgian authorities to conduct subversive activities and terrorist acts.

"To prevent these activities, South Ossetian security-related forces, including police, are forming special counter-terrorist units," Mindzayev said.

On Wednesday, Col. Gen. Anatoly Nogovitsyn, the deputy chief of Russia's General Staff, said a Georgian reconnaissance drone made a flight at 3.15 p.m. Moscow time [11.15 GMT] over South Ossetia, spying on places of deployment and movement routes of Russian military detachments, in violation of existing agreements.

Numerous flights by reconnaissance drones over South Ossetia were reported by Russian peacekeepers before Georgia launched its devastating military offensive against the region on August 8.

Russia officially recognized South Ossetia, along with breakaway Abkhazia, as independent countries on Tuesday.

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