Caspian's status to be discussed in Ashgabat: Azerbaijani deputy FM
Azerbaijan, Baku, October 23 / Trend U.Sadikhova /
The status of the Caspian Sea will be discussed on November 5-6 in the Turkmen capital of Ashgabat, said Deputy Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan Khalaf Khalafov.
"We have an agreement with the Iranian side on the legal status of the Caspian Sea and its bottom section, and we hope that a consensus will also be reached with Turkmenistan. On November 5-6, Ashgabat will host discussions on the status of the Caspian Sea," Khalafov said to press conference on the results of the meeting on security in the Caspian region.
On Thursday and Friday, Baku hosted the meeting of deputy foreign ministers of the Caspian countries to discuss security in the Caspian region.
According to Khalafov, the issue that the status of the Caspian Sea has not yet been defined does not prevent the Caspian countries from implementing other projects to ensure the security in the Caspian Sea.
"Projects that are currently being implemented in the environmental and transport sectors, the cooperation of border services, the interior agencies improve the welfare of the peoples living in the Caspian countries," said Khalafov.
Answering the question whether this project will provide an opportunity to reduce armaments of the Caspian countries, Khalafov said that "it is the sovereign right of states, and we can cooperate on this issue only to ensure safety."
Safety issues should be decided only by five Caspian littoral states, but we support international cooperation on security, he said.
On the division of the Caspian Sea, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Russia have no claims for each other's sectors. There are both bilateral and trilateral agreements between these countries on the issue. The parties have also agreed to determine the coordinates of the dividing line. The issue is yet to be agreed with two countries - Turkmenistan and Iran. It is due to this that the status of the Caspian Sea has not yet been defined, despite many years of discussions.
Azerbaijan was the first Caspian Sea country to begin to set the limits of the world's largest lake and define control over it. The Republic of Azerbaijan was the first to announce accessibility to its sector of the Caspian Sea on Sept. 20 in 1994 by signing an international contract ("The Contract of the Century") with Western companies on a PSA model - production sharing agreement. This has also been reflected in the Basic Law of Azerbaijan, dated 1995.
Do you have any feedback? Contact our journalist at [email protected]