THE CASPIAN REGION:Politics, Economics, Culture

Scientific journal

Elaborating Mechanisms of the International Legal Status of the Caspian Sea: History and Outcomes

2018. 1, pp. 44-49

Zhiltsov S.S. - D.Sc. (Politicy), Head of Department, Diplomatic Academy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, bld. 53/2 Ostozhenka Str., Moscow, 119992, Russian Federation, sergej-z71@yandex.ru

Zonn I.S. - Zonn Igor S., Engineering Research Production Center on Water Management, Land Reclamation and Ecology “Sojuzvodproject”, bld. 43/1 Baumanskaya Str., Moscow, 107005, Russian Federation, igorzonn@yandex.ru

Rozhkov I.S. - 3rd Secretary, CIS Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, bld. 32/34 Smolenskaya-Sennaya Sq., Moscow, 119200, Russian Federation, ilja_roschkow@mail.ru

Collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 led to the increase in number of the Caspian Littoral States. It was necessary under the circumstances to revisean old legislative frameworkand renew the legal status of the Caspian Sea.Former Soviet-Persian and Soviet-Iranian agreements, whichhad previously determined the legal status of the basin, didn’t correspond with needs of the time because of the lack of juridical regulations about such topical issues as: marine mineral exploration, environmental requirements to the mineral resources development, etc. Unilateral actions of some Littoral States didn’t find understanding and support of their neighbors. That aggravated a situation in the region as well asadversely affected the negotiation process within the framework of the Special Working Group for drafting a Convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea at the level of Deputy Foreign Ministers of the Littoral States (SWG). The article analyzes the mechanisms formed after the collapse of the USSR for elaborating the international legal status of the Caspian Sea. The core role in the negotiation process along with SWGs as well as Meetings of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Caspian Littoral States played Caspian Summits. The authors underline positive influence of summits on establishment of multilateral cooperation mechanisms in the region as well as development of relations in the “Caspian Five”. Positive balance of the First Caspian Summit (Ashgabat, 2002) and its positive influence on the rapprochement of the Littoral States on the “sensitive questions of cooperation” are considered. The regulations of the Joint Declaration of the Second Caspian Summit (Tehran, 2007) as political guideline for the negotiation process on the legal status of the basin till the adoption of the comprehensive Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Seaare analyzed. Great positive significance of the Agreementon Security Cooperation in the Caspian Sea, which was endorsed within the framework of the Third Caspian Summit (Baku, 2010), for strengthening the status of the Caspian Sea as basin of peace, friendship and good-neighborliness is highlighted. The breakthrough natureof the agreements of the Fourth Caspian Summit (Astrakhan, 2014) on key questions of regional cooperation issues, which have become a legalframework for the draft comprehensive Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea, is noted.

Key words: , , , - , , , , Caspian Sea, Caspian Summit, convention, international legal status, delimitation, Special Working Group, Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Caspian Littoral States

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