By Rashid Shirinov
Adoption of a convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea may require coordination of a number of nuances at the level of foreign ministers or working groups.
Russian State Secretary, Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin made the remarks in his interview with the newspaper Kommersant.
“The draft convention has generally been agreed by the foreign ministers of the Caspian “Five” at a meeting held recently in Moscow,” he said.
Karasin noted that a summit of the Caspian states will take place in Astana, Kazakhstan in 2018, and its participants are expected to consider the prepared draft convention.
“But as the high-level summit approaches, some nuances may appear that will require additional coordination,” he said. “Therefore, I would not exclude a preparatory meeting of foreign ministers or working groups in order to clarify these nuances.”
Russian president’s special representative for humanitarian cooperation with the Caspian countries Ramazan Abdulatipov has earlier said that the summit of the heads of the Caspian states will discuss the draft convention on the legal status of the sea.
The issue of determining the legal status of the Caspian Sea became relevant after the collapse of the USSR, when the emergence of new subjects of international law - Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan - raised the issue of delimitation of the Caspian Sea between the five littoral countries.
The difficulties in determining the status of the Caspian Sea were linked, in particular, with the recognition of it as a lake or sea, the delineation of which is regulated by different provisions of international law.
The leaders of the five countries met for the first time in 2002 in Ashgabat. The second Caspian summit was held in Tehran in 2007, the third one in Baku in 2010, and the fourth summit – in Astrakhan in 2014.
Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov
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