Georgia: Russian Spy Plane Downed

Moscow denies sending camera-equipped drone
By Ambreen Ali,  Newser User
Posted Sep 23, 2008 9:23 AM CDT
Smoke rises above a Georgian military airbase, after Russian troops, in control of the base, set off explosions on a runway, in Senaki, western Georgia, last month.   (AP Photo/Bela Szandelszky)
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(Newser) – Georgia says it shot down a Russian military drone yesterday just south of South Ossetia, the Moscow-backed breakaway province. Moscow officials deny the charge and have called the episode "the latest media provocation" by Georgia to "destabilize the situation," Reuters reports.

A Georgian official says the short-range unmanned aircraft—around a meter in length and 1.5 meters wide—had a camera on board and was found patrolling near an oil pipeline. The incident comes days before 200 European Union monitors arrive to verify Russia's pullback from Georgian territory near the border of South Ossetia.