Arguing that Azerbaijan isthe master of its own destiny, President Heidar Aliyev said May23 that the large deal between Baku and Western oil companieswould survive challenges by “certain forces and state circles,”the Turan agency reported May 23. Aliyev’s comments came at theopening of a Baku conference on the oil industry. Many of theinternational participants suggested that the first pipelinescarrying oil from Azerbaijan would cross Georgia or Russia, butat this same meeting US energy secretary Hazel O’Leary toldreporters that Washington was prepared to support a swaparrangement that would allow some of Baku’s oil to be exportedvia Iran. She said the only open question was “how much” couldgo via this route.
Armenia Demands International Guarantees On Energy Supply.