Iran Ready for Wide-Ranging Coop. With Caspian States 

Iran Ready for Wide-Ranging Coop. With Caspian States 
Iran Ready for Wide-Ranging Coop. With Caspian States 

Tehran is ready to boost multi-faceted cooperation with Caspian Sea littoral states on the basis of mutual respect and common interests, President Ebrahim Raisi said. 
“This cooperation will not only bring about economic vitality and improve the welfare of our nations, but will also strengthen countries’ independence and promote regional peace and stability while helping resolve Caspian-related issues by littoral states alone,” he said on Wednesday in an address to the Sixth Summit of the Caspian Sea Littoral States in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, reported. 
He described the Caspian Sea as a common legacy and a source of blessing for more than 270 million people residing in the five countries sharing its shores. 
“Iran welcomes and supports initiatives put forward by participating countries’ presidents for the expansion of economic cooperation in all sectors, and particularly stressed the importance of upgrading cultural relations and efforts to protect the vulnerable environment of the Caspian Sea,” he said. 
Along this line, the Islamic Republic is ready to provide other littoral states transit access to other countries and regions, especially Iran’s Persian Gulf and Oman Sea ports, through its territory, according to the president. 
Raisi stressed the need for adherence to the key principle of “exclusive and consensual competence of coastal states” for making decisions about the sea and addressing its related issues, adding that such approach could prevent third parties and non-littoral countries’ interference or invasion. 
Highlighting the importance of five-sided cooperation and avoiding unilateralism, the president also called for special attention to long-term interests of the Caspian region and the principle of consensus in all decisions related to the sea.  
He later pointed to the convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea, signed in 2018 during the summit in Kazakhstan after 20 years of negotiation, saying it can pave the way for further cooperation among the coastal countries. 
Raisi also said concluding an agreement on drawing the baselines in the Caspian Sea is of great importance for Iran, as a country whose coastlines are obviously in an unpleasant condition. 
The president finally expressed Iran’s readiness to host the seventh summit of the Caspian Sea littoral states. 
Raisi arrived in Turkmenistan on Wednesday to attend the 6th Caspian Summit. He also met with top Turkmen authorities and his counterparts from other participating countries on the sidelines of the event.

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