Tuesday, September 05, 2006


A ministry statement said the shooting took place Aug. 28 and that the helicopter was not damaged.

Contacted last night in Washington, Sununu confirmed the trip, but said he was not aware of any problem with security.

"We traveled with government security throughout our visit and I don't know of any member of the delegation that noted any concerns about preparedness or the capability of security provisions," Sununu said.

He said the trip of 2 1/2 days included a motorcade tour of northern central Georgia, including helicopter travel into South Ossetia villages, accompanied by Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili and a U.S. delegation led by Sen. John McCain.

Sununu explained that although South Ossetia is considered part of Georgia, there has been some political tension in the past. He said South Ossetia currently operates under a de facto government of self-appointed leaders not recognized by the United Nations.

In addition to Sununu, the delegation included Sens. Saxby Chambliss, R-Georgia; Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina; Mel Martinez, R-Florida; and Richard Burr, R-North Carolina.

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