US gives $1bn to rebuild Georgia

The US has announced $1bn (Â £564m) of aid to Georgia for reconstruction after the conflict with Russia.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said the aid would be used to rebuild houses and infrastructure – but not for military purposes.

Georgia has requested $2bn in funding from the international community.

Fighting between Russia and Georgia began on 7 August after the Georgian military tried to retake the breakaway region of South Ossetia by force.

Russian forces launched a counter-attack and the conflict ended with the ejection of Georgian troops from both South Ossetia and another breakaway region, Abkhazia.

Russia has since recognised the independence of both regions.

Nicaragua, whose leftist government fiercely opposes the US, now appears to have become the second nation to recognise their independence.

President Daniel Ortega said in a speech: “The government of Nicaragua recognises the independence of the republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia and we are completely with the Russian government’s position.”

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