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    Russia accuses Ukraine of fighting for Georgia against S.Ossetia

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    Russian prosecutors said on Monday that Ukrainian troops and members of a nationalist group were involved in Georgia's attack on South Ossetia last August

    MOSCOW, August 24 (RIA Novosti) - Russian prosecutors said on Monday that Ukrainian troops and members of a nationalist group were involved in Georgia's attack on South Ossetia last August.

    "Ukraine's regular Defense Ministry units and at least 200 members of the UNA-UNSO nationalist organization joined Georgia in its military aggression against the republic of South Ossetia," the investigation department of the Prosecutor General's Office's said in a statement.

    Russian investigators say they have found uniforms, photographs and documents belonging to Ukrainian National Assembly - Ukrainian National Self Defense (UNA-UNSO) members, as well as documents authorizing them to use vehicles provided by Georgian authorities.

    A spokesman for Ukraine's General Staff denied the Russian prosecutors' accusation, which coincided with Ukraine's Independence Day.

    "This is propaganda. Our military units were not there," Serhiy Kuzmin was quoted by the BBC Russian service as saying. He said the Ukrainian soldiers who took part in military drills in Georgia were withdrawn from the country when the war broke out.

    A senior UNA-UNSO official also dismissed the accusations, the BBC reported. "Our mission was informal, we expressed our vision of the conflict. UNA-UNSO members were not within the military detachments," Serhiy Chumak said.

    Russia repelled Georgia's attack on South Ossetia, and engaged in a five-day war with Georgia. It later recognized the self-proclaimed republic and Georgia's other breakaway region, Abkhazia, as independent states and increased its military presence there.

    Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko supported Georgia in its conflict with Russia. He also denied Moscow's accusations of military assistance to Tbilisi, saying Ukrainian arms supplies to Georgia were legal, as the country was not under any international arms embargos.

    Russian President Dimitry Medvedev accused Yushchenko of damaging relations with Russia by pursuing "hostile" policies in an open letter earlier this month. Yushchenko said he was "disappointed" by the letter.

     

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