March 21: Russian parliament urges Kremlin to consider recognizing South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states because Georgia seeks NATO membership.

April 16: Russia vows to build up peacekeeping forces in two regions, citing fears Georgia preparing attack. Georgia accuses Russia of trying to provoke conflict and annex provinces.

July 9: Russian fighter jets enter Georgian airspace during visit by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Aug. 1: Skirmishing resumes, with several deaths.

Aug. 7: Georgian army advances on South Ossetia, shelling area's capital, Tskhinvali. Russia sends tanks into South Ossetia.

Aug. 8: Georgia says its troops control Tskhinvali, but within hours they are driven out by Russian forces that push on into Georgian territory outside South Ossetia.

Aug. 12: Declaring "the aggressor has been punished," Kremlin orders halt to hostilities.

Aug. 14: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says Georgia can "forget about" getting back South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

Aug. 15: Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili says he signs cease-fire agreement that calls for withdrawal of troops to pre-conflict positions.

Aug. 16: Lavrov says Russia signs cease-fire but will not withdraw troops until satisfied security measures effective.

Aug. 22: Moscow pulls armored forces out of positions in Georgia and declares pullout finished, but U.S., France and Britain contend withdrawal not complete.

Aug. 25: Russia's parliament urges Kremlin recognize independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Western nations warn against recognition.

Aug. 26: Russian President Dmitry Medvedev recognizes South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states, accusing Georgia of attempting genocide. Says Russia doesn't fear new Cold War.