Russia and Turkey keep at bay in Nagorno-Karabakh

Russia and Turkey are for now limiting their involvement in the ongoing conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan to providing humanitarian assistance and some military aid.

Turkey sees its strong backing for Azerbaijan as part of efforts to boost its international power.

Russia -- which has a defense pact with Armenia -- is determined to defend its own interests in the region.

But neither wants to be sucked into an all-out war.

Thousands are feared killed since fighting flared on Sept. 27 in the Nagorno-Karabakh territory.

It is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan but populated and controlled by ethnic Armenians.

Turkey's support for Azerbaijan has been vital, and Azerbaijan's superior weaponry and battlefield advances have reduced its incentive to reach a lasting peace deal.

Russia is Armenia's main arms supplier though it also sells weapons to Azerbaijan which -- like Armenia -- was part of the Soviet Union for decades.

Political analysts say Turkey is likely to refrain from deeper military involvement if its ally continues to advance.

Russia is unlikely to become directly involved militarily unless Azerbaijan launches a deliberate attack on Armenia.

Moscow has a pragmatic relationship with Ankara that has overcome past crises and both worry about the security of oil and gas pipelines in Azerbaijan.