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France and Turkey at odds as war between Azerbaijan and Armenia divides NATO allies

NATO allies France and Turkey traded angry recriminations on Wednesday as international tensions mounted over the fiercest clashes between Azerbaijan and ethnic Armenian forces since the mid-1990s.

On the fourth day of fighting, Azerbaijan and the ethnic Armenian enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh accused each other of shelling along the line of contact that divides them in the volatile, mountainous South Caucasus.

Dozens have been reported killed and hundreds wounded in fighting since Sunday that has spread well beyond the enclave`s boundaries, threatening to spill over into all-out war between the former Soviet republics of Azerbaijan and Armenia.

The re-eruption of one of the “frozen conflicts” dating back the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union has raised concerns about stability in the South Caucasus, a corridor for pipelines carrying oil and gas to world markets, and raised fears that regional powers Russia and Turkey could be drawn in.

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