Russia-Georgia flights resume despite protests, strained ties

TBILISI, Georgia (AP) — Direct flights have resumed between Russia and Georgia amid protests and sharp criticism from the South Caucasus nation’s president. The move on Friday came just over a week after the Kremlin unexpectedly lifted a four-year-old ban despite rocky relations. Protesters gathered at Tbilisi airport to meet the first flight arriving from Russia since July 2019. They held signs and shouted slogans criticizing Moscow and what they said were the Georgian government’s attempts at rapprochement. Russia and Georgia fought a short war in 2008 that ended in Tbilisi losing control of two Moscow-friendly separatist regions and the rupture of diplomatic ties.