President Putin traveled to Azerbaijan to meet with its head of state and fellow Soviet KGB veteran, Haidar Aliev. The two leaders signed a number of documents, including a “declaration of principles” on security and cooperation in the Caucasus, which pledged both sides to achieve a “higher level of strategic partnership.” While Azerbaijan’s neighbor and enemy, Armenia, was undoubtedly not pleased by this and some of Putin’s symbolic gestures–such as laying flowers at Baku memorial commemorating the victims of the January 1990 assault by Soviet troops and Azeris killed in fighting over the disputed enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh–there was little danger that Putin was moving in any substantive way to end either Moscow’s traditionally pro-Armenian tilt or its efforts to check Baku’s pro-Western tilt. Indeed, just after Putin’s visit ended, his envoy for Caspian issues, Viktor Kalyuzhny, restated Moscow’s opposition to plans to make a pipeline between Baku and Ceyhan, Turkey, the main conduit for the export of Caspian Sea oil.