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Georgian Premier's Motorcade Fired On In Ossetia

13 August 2004 -- Georgian authorities say Prime Minister Zurab Zhvania's motorcade came under gunfire today in the separatist province of South Ossetia.

Russian peackeepers deployed in the region were unable to confirm the incident, which left no casualties.

The shootout reportedly occurred near the ethnic Georgian village of Eredvi, east of the South Ossetian capital of Tskhinvali, where armed clashes erupted overnight.

Police in Georgia's neighboring Shida Kartli region say a South Ossetian attack on Eredvi left at least three wounded. The separatist leadership in turn says Georgian fire injured three people in the ethnic Ossetian village of Dmenisi, northeast of Tskhinvali.

Georgian Minister for Conflict Resolution Giorgi Khaindrava is due to travel to the South Ossetian capital today to attend an emergency session of the four-party Joint Control Commission on South Ossetia (JCC). The meeting is aimed at defusing tension in the region.

The JCC includes representatives of Georgia, Russia, South Ossetia, and the neighboring Russian republic of North Ossetia.

(Prime News/Rustavi-2/Novosti-Gruziya/ITAR-TASS)

For the latest news on the tensions in South Ossetia, see RFE/RL's webpage on Ossetia.