A rapprochement between Turkey and Armenia could have unintended consequences

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The US president had personally pushed for reconciliation between the two countries.

Yet the budding rapprochement is threatening to undermine the delicate balance of power in the Caucasus with potentially serious consequences for Europe's energy security.

Energy rich Azerbaijan is deeply unhappy that Turkey, a vital ally, is cosying up to Armenia, with whom it fought an unresolved war in the early 1990s over the disputed enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Fearing regional isolation, Azerbaijan, a friend of the West, could seek a new champion in Russia, which has traditionally been Armenia's protector.

That could be bad news if Azerbaijan chooses to sell its considerable gas supplies to Russia instead of the European Union, a condition Moscow would demand in return for its patronage.

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