S. Ossetia Puts On Military Parade

South Ossetians celebrated their independence day with a military parade Saturday, rolling what Russian state media said were U.S.-made Jeeps and Georgian tanks through their breakaway capital in an apparent display of captured military booty.

The parade in Tskhinvali came less than a month after Russia recognized South Ossetia's long-standing claim of independence from Georgia.

"For 18 years, the people of South Ossetia, day after day, have been declaring and proving their right to an equal place among other nations of the world," South Ossetia's leader, Eduard Kokoity, told the crowd watching the parade, in remarks broadcast on state-run Russian television. The military parade was featured prominently in Russian newscasts.

On Sept. 20, 1990, as the Soviet Union was breaking up, the parliament of South Ossetia declared the creation of a separate South Ossetian republic and adopted a declaration of sovereignty. South Ossetia broke from Georgian government control in a war that followed.