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2008 Georgia Russia Conflict Fast Facts

By CNN Library
updated 9:16 AM EDT, Sun March 16, 2014

(CNN) -- Here's a look at what you need to know about the 2008 military conflict between Russia and Georgia.

Facts:
The conflict centered on South Ossetia and Abkhazia, two "breakaway provinces" in Georgia. They are officially part of Georgia, but have separate, unrecognized governments.

Abkhazia and South Ossetia are supported by Russia.

Russia has peacekeeping operations in both South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

During the five-day conflict, 170 servicemen, 14 policemen, and 228 civilians from Georgia were killed and 1,747 wounded. Sixty-seven Russian servicemen were killed, and 283 were wounded, and 365 South Ossetian servicemen and civilians (combined) were killed, according to an official EU fact-finding report about the conflict.

Timeline:
1918-1921- Georgia is briefly an independent state after separating from the Russian Empire.

1921 - After the Red Army invasion, Georgia is declared a Soviet Socialist republic.

April 9, 1991 - Georgia declares independence.

1991 - South Ossetia declares its independence from Georgia. Heavy fighting breaks out, forcing thousands of people to flee their homes.

1991-1992 - Civil war breaks out in Georgia. Zviad Gamsakhurdia is deposed as president.

1992 - Abkhazia declares its independence from Georgia, leading to armed conflict.

October 1992 - Eduard Shevardnadze is elected to lead Georgia. He is re-elected in 1995 and 2000.

September 1993 - Abkhazian separatist forces defeat the Georgian military.

October 1993 - Georgia joins the Commonwealth of Independent States.

May 1994 - A ceasefire is agreed upon and signed between the Georgian government and Abkhaz separatists. Russian peacekeeping forces are deployed to the area.

October 2001 - Fighting resumes between Abkhaz troops and Georgian paramilitaries. Russia states that it believes Georgia is harboring Chechen rebels, a claim denied by Georgia.

September 2002 - Russian President Vladimir Putin sends a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, U.N. Security Council members, and members of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe stating that Georgia must respond to accusations they are harboring Chechen militants or face military action from Russia.

October 2002 - Tensions with Russia are defused after Eduard Shevardnadze, Georgia's president, promises to work with Russia to fight Chechen rebels.

November 2003 - Shevardnadze is forced to leave office in the "Rose Revolution."

July 2005 - Under terms of a deal reached in May, Russia starts to withdraw its troops from two Soviet-era military bases.

May-June 2006 - Tensions between Georgia and Russia rise again when Georgia demands that Russian peacekeepers in South Ossetia have visas.

November 12, 2006 - A referendum is voted upon in which South Ossetians overwhelmingly demand independence. In a simultaneous referendum, South Ossetia's ethnic Georgians, a minority, vote to stay a part of Georgia. The referendum is not recognized by the Georgian government.

November 2007 - Russia announces that it has withdrawn its troops that had been based in Georgia since 1991. It retains a peacekeeping presence in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

April 3, 2008 - NATO members at a summit in Bucharest, Romania defer the decision on Georgia and Ukraine's admittance until December 2008.

April 21, 2008 - Georgia accuses Russia of shooting down an unmanned drone over Abkhazia on April 20. Russia denies the claim.

April 29, 2008 - Russia sends more troops to Abkhazia to counter what it says are Georgia's plans for an attack.

May 6, 2008 - White House spokeswoman Dana Perino says Russia's recent actions have, "significantly and unnecessarily heightened tensions in the region and run counter to Russia's status as a facilitator of the U.N. friends process on Abkhazia. In contacts with both the Russian and Georgian government at the highest level, the United States has firmly reiterated our support for Georgia's territorial integrity and strongly urged Russia to de-escalate and reverse its measures."

May 26, 2008 - A U.N. investigation concludes that the drone shot down on April 21 was struck by a missile from a Russian fighter jet.

May 30-31, 2008 - Russia sends several hundred unarmed troops to Abkhazia, saying they are needed for railway repairs. Georgia accuses Russia of planning a military intervention.

August 7-8, 2008 - South Ossetian separatists begin attacking Georgian peacekeepers, ending a ceasefire. Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili sends troops into South Ossetia. Russia responds by moving its troops to the border, flying aircraft over Georgia, and beginning air strikes in South Ossetia.

August 8, 2008 - The United States, Great Britain and NATO call for a cease fire of military hostilities by both Russia and Georgia.

August 9, 2008 - A delegation of EU and U.S. diplomats head to Georgia to resolve escalating tensions.

August 10, 2008 - Russia moves tanks and soldiers through South Ossetia and into Georgia proper, advancing towards the city of Gori.

August 12, 2008 - Russia calls a halt to its military incursion into Georgia and agrees to a six-point diplomatic push for peace. The plan is announced by French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.

August 13, 2008 - President George W. Bush announces humanitarian aid is to be sent to Georgia. It is also announced that Condoleezza Rice will be sent to France and Georgia for a diplomatic mission.

August 15, 2008 - Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili signs a cease fire agreement with Russia. The deal is brokered by French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

August 16, 2008 - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signs the cease fire agreement.

August 19, 2008 - NATO foreign ministers meet in Belgium to discuss the Georgia-Russia conflict.

August 22, 2008 - Russia completes its troop withdrawal from Georgia, as part of the cease fire agreement.

August 24, 2008 - The USS McFaul delivers humanitarian aid to Georgia.

August 26, 2008 - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signs an order recognizing the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, the two breakaway regions in Georgia. In response, U.S. President George W. Bush releases a statement saying, "The United States condemns the decision by the Russian president to recognize as independent states the Georgian regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. The territorial integrity and borders of Georgia must be respected, just as those of Russia or any other country. Russia's action only exacerbates tensions and complicates diplomatic negotiations."

July 2009 - U.N. observers leave Georgia after 16 years. The mission was not extended due to a Russia veto.

September 2009 - A report from an EU fact-finding mission determines that the 2008 conflict was caused by Georgia's illegal attack on the South Ossetian capital of Tskhinvali on August 7-8.

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