Caspian Sea Meeting Fruitful

Caspian Sea Meeting Fruitful Caspian Sea Meeting Fruitful

The deputy foreign minister for Asia and Pacific affairs said the participants in the 40th meeting of the special working group tasked with drafting a convention on the legal regime of the Caspian Sea, which is in progress in Tehran, have reached "good" agreements.

"We have managed to achieve good agreements on defining the boundaries of (the littoral states') sovereign territories and the legal regimes governing the body of water," Ebrahim Rahimpour was quoted by IRNA as saying during the meeting on Monday.

He announced that a joint relief and rescue drill with other littoral states is scheduled to be held in the coming weeks in the port city of Anzali in northern Gilan Province.

Asked on the sidelines of the meeting about Iran's share of the Caspian Sea, Rahimpour said, "What matters in the talks is that justice is served and the rights of all the five nations are respected."  Iran, Russia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan are the five littoral states of the resource-rich Caspian Sea.

"In addition to drafting the convention on the legal regime, preparing six more documents is on the agenda of the negotiations," Rahimpour stated in his address to meeting.

 Protocols to Convention

"Over the past year, good agreements have been signed on drafting the additional protocols to the convention and preserving the aquatic resources of the Caspian Sea."

Referring to the 4th summit of the Caspian Sea littoral states held in the southern Russian city of Astrakhan on September 29, 2014, he said, "Three important documents of cooperation were signed on (managing) aquatic resources, (conducting) hydrological and meteorological research and preventing disasters in the Caspian Sea."

In the summit, the heads of five littoral states agreed on a joint statement to outline future agreements on cooperation in the region.

Commenting on the joint statement, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at the time, "Most importantly, we have agreed on a political statement that for the first time lays down basic principles of five-party cooperation in the Caspian region. These agreements are in long-term interests of all sides."

Putin added that he was hopeful that the Caspian states would adopt a convention on the legal status of the sea at the next summit in Kazakhstan, whose date is not set yet. The Caspian Sea's large fish resources and oil and gas deposits have made it a subject of territorial talks among the five states.

On September 26, 2014, the five states agreed to prevent the military presence of non-regional countries in the region.