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A Russian fighter jet has shot down an unmanned reconnaissance aircraft over Georgia, Georgian authorities say.

Georgia's defence ministry told the BBC it had video footage showing a Russian MiG-29 aircraft shooting down the unarmed Georgian drone on Sunday.

A spokesman for Russia's air force told Reuters the claim was "nonsense".

Tensions are high between the two neighbours over Russian support for breakaway Georgian regions, and Georgian moves towards joining Nato.

The Georgian air force told Reuters news agency the video footage showed a Russian jet launching a missile at the Georgian plane as it flew over the breakaway Abkhazia region.

"It's absolutely illegal for a Russian MiG-29 to be there," Col David Nairashvili, the air force commander, told Reuters.

Last week, Georgia accused Russia of trying to annex the breakaway republics of Abkhazia and South Ossetia by deciding to seek closer ties with them.

Russia has said the plan is aimed at protecting the rights and legal interests of Russian citizens, who make up the majority of the population in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Russian and UN peacekeepers have been deployed in the two republics since the early 1990s, when violence broke out as both regions tried to break free from Georgian control.
Earlier this month, Nato decided not to grant Georgia's request to join its Membership Action Plan but promised it would eventually become a member of the alliance.