August 9, 2008 / 12:06 PM / 11 years ago

Abkhaz separatists say attack Georgian gorge

MOSCOW, Aug 9 (Reuters) - Separatists from Georgia’s breakaway region of Abkhazia have launched a military operation in a Tbilisi-controlled part of the disputed Kodori gorge, the separatists’ foreign minister said on Saturday.

"Abkhaz armed forces launched an operation to drive Georgian forces out of the gorge," Sergei Shamba said by telephone from the regional capital Sukhumi. "Artillery has been used." Earlier on Friday, Abkhaz separatist leaders said they had sent warplanes to bomb the Kodori gorge. A spokesman for the pro-Tbilisi Abkhaz government in exile said Russian warplanes had bombed two villages. (Writing by Oleg Shchedrov; Editing by Matthew Tostevin)

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