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Georgia, Russia At Odds Over Tbilisi-Moscow Flights

The dispute is based on the status of Russia's Zhukovsky airport near Moscow, which has caused several international spats. (file photo)

TBILISI -- Georgian Airways has made changes to its Tbilisi-Moscow flight schedule after Russia cut the number of flights connecting the two capitals.

Georgian Airways director Givi Davitashvili told reporters on July 16 that the new schedule would start functioning on July 17. Davitashvili added that four morning flights to Moscow from Tbilisi had been cancelled at Moscow's request.

Russia's Transport Ministry said on July 15 that it restricted Georgian Airways' flights due to Georgia's refusal to allow Russian carrier Ural Airlines to conduct flights to Tbilisi from the Zhukovsky airport near Moscow.

The status of Zhukovsky regional airport has caused several international spats.

Tajik and Israeli aviation authorities claimed the airport, which opened in May 2016, was Moscow's fourth international airport and had led to an increase in flights from Moscow.

Georgian aviation authorities have not allowed Ural Airlines to conduct flights from the airport since May, citing similar reasons.

Russia contends that Zhukovsky is not a Moscow airport because it is under the formal authority of Ramenskoye, a town outside the capital.

Georgian Airways has been the only Georgian airline company conducting flights between Tbilisi and Moscow since 2014.

With reporting by apsny and TASS