- a region in N Georgia, on the S side of the Caucasus Range. 1506 sq. mi. (3900 sq. km).
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- a disputed region in Georgia on the S slopes of the Caucasus Mountains; in 1990 it voted to join Russia, leading to armed conflict with Georgian forces; it became an autonomous region in 1997 but later lost this status under a nationwide reorganization of local government; it declared itself an independent republic in 2008 following armed conflict in the region between Russian and Georgian forces. Capital: Tskhinvali. Pop: about 70 000 (2000 est). Area: 3900 sq km (1500 sq miles)Georgian name: Tskhinvali Also called: South Ossetian Autonomous Region
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