Zarif: Decision on Caspian Sea Convention rests with Iranian Parliament
Baku, Azerbaijan, July 30
By Elnur Baghishov – Trend:
The Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea will be forwarded to the Iranian Parliament for approval once the necessary procedures will be initiated to this end, said Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif when answering the question of MPs in the Iranian Parliament, Trend reports referring to ISNA.
According to him, Iran has always been pursuing to protect its rights in the Caspian Sea, which is why the discussions have lasted for 21 years.
Zarif added that it is noted in the convention that legal procedures regarding the convention should be carried out in each respective country.
"A consensus was not reached on the surface and the bottom of the Caspian Sea in this convention, and it was decided to talk these matters over on bilateral terms," he said.
"The convention focuses on a number of environmental and shipping issues," he added.
Zarif went on to say that no country in the Caspian Sea has been granted rights for a 50-percent share of the sea. The former USSR divided the Caspian Sea into 4 parts and allowed Iran to operate within the Astara (modern-day Azerbaijan)-Esenguly (modern-day Turkmenistan) line.
"But the present convention does not allow any country to enter the 15-mile limit of another country," he said.
Zarif noted that Iran has very good relations with Russia and other neighbors. "At the same time, territorial integrity is a very important issue for Iran," he stressed.
“On the one hand, this convention will guarantee Iran a very good relationship with its neighbors,” he said.