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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Georgia Claims Proof Russians Fired Missile

TBILISI, Georgia -- Georgia said Wednesday that it had proof that Russian jets violated its airspace and fired a missile that landed near a house, a claim Russia has denied.

Georgia's Foreign Ministry issued a formal protest, calling the intrusion and firing of the missile "undisguised aggression and a gross violation of sovereignty of the country."

"The ministry said that radar records compatible with NATO standards showed that a Russian Su-24 jet had flown from Russia into Georgia and launched a missile, which did not explode.

Investigators identified the weapon as a Russian-made Raduga Kh-58 missile, designed to hit radar systems, the ministry said. The missile, code-named AS-11 by NATO, carried a warhead of 140 kilograms of TNT, it said.

Georgian Defense Ministry spokesman Georgy Tatishvili said the Russian aircraft was probably aiming at a Georgian radar system in the area.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe said in a report that its mission in Georgia had confirmed that Georgian airspace was violated, but could not say how many and what kind of aircraft were involved. The mission also said it could not identify the missile.

The Air Force has flatly denied that its planes crossed into Georgia's airspace.

The Gori region, where the missile was dropped, is next to Georgia's breakaway region of South Ossetia.

General Marat Kulakhmetov, commander of Russian peacekeepers patrolling South Ossetia, said an unidentified aircraft dropped the missile after flying over South Ossetia and coming under fire from the ground. Kulakhmetov suggested the plane came from Georgia. Officials from South Ossetia's separatist government flatly accused Georgia of dropping the missile.