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    Georgia ready to transit Russian gas to South Ossetia - Gazprom

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    NOVO-OGAREVO (Moscow Region), January 5 (RIA Novosti) - Georgia has announced its readiness to restart deliveries of gas to South Ossetia, Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller said on Monday at a meeting with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

    "I have just received the information that the Georgian side is ready to renew deliveries of gas to South Ossetia," the chairman of the Russian energy giant's board said.

    Gas had been supplied to the republic through the Gori-Tskhinvali pipeline, which leads from Russia to South Ossetia via Georgia. Gas supplies through the pipeline were halted due to the brief conflict between Russia and Georgia sparked by Tbilisi's assault on its separatist republic.

    Georgia said supplies had stopped due to pipeline damage on South Ossetian territory.

    Russia disputed this claim and in late December suggested Georgia was falsely claiming damage to the pipeline on its territory to avoid sending gas to the breakaway region.

    On December 18, Russian gas monopoly Gazprom said it would launch direct natural gas supplies to South Ossetia in 2009. Residents of South Ossetia currently use liquefied gas, received from four Gazprom's LNG-filling stations.

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