Zarif hails consensus on banning military presence of non-littoral states in Caspian Sea

TEHRAN, Aug. 11 (MNA) – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the involved parties at the Convention On Caspian Sea's Legal Status agreed upon the monopoly of the presence and sailing of any fleet solely by the flag of one of the littoral states, as well as the prohibition on the presence of foreign military troops in the Sea.

"In the light of the positive determination of the leaders of littoral states and the friendly, constructive atmosphere in the meetings, we are about to sign the Convention on the Caspian Sea legal status and 6 other agreements and protocols as well as the summit's statement.

He added that 21 days ago, the Transboundary Environmental Impact Assessment (TbEIA) was signed. "These events promise a very clear future for our nations and governments. The signing of the Convention on the Caspian Sea legal status is a very important step to finalize the 21-year talks in this regard."

The signing of the Convention, Zarif underlined, is not the end of all negotiations over the Caspian Sea, and it is actually a milestone in the implementation of the agreements, monitoring the implementation, as well as an opening for the negotiations to sign fresh and necessary accords.

While legal status of seabed and water borders restrictions stays unclear in the Convention, I hope the littoral countries will finalize the issues in the near future," Zarif noted.

He expressed satisfaction that the involved parties at the Convention on the Caspian Sea legal status have agreed upon the monopoly of the presence and sailing of any fleet solely by the flag of one of the littoral states, as well as the prohibition on the presence of foreign military forces.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif, heading a political-legal delegation, left Tehran for Aktau, Kazakhstan, on Saturday to take part in the Caspian Sea Littoral States meeting.

The fifth summit of the Caspian Littoral States' heads of governments will be held in Aktau with the presence of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Sunday.

The previous meeting of the foreign ministers of the Caspian Sea Littoral States was held on December 4-5, 2017, in Moscow. 

The text of the Convention on the Caspian Sea legal status was agreed upon in Moscow meeting and is expected to be signed in Aktau summit.

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