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To the Editor of the “Messenger”

Tuesday, April 28
Number: 240/1080
Date: 24/04/09

We would like to notify you that the article of April 24, 2009 published in your newspaper and on your official website under the headline: “Different opinions on division of Caspian Sea” contained some inaccuracies.

It would be appreciated if you publish the following explanation from the Embassy and inform the readers of these facts:

It is mentioned in the article that Iran and the USSR established borders in the Caspian Sea. This is not correct. According to the legal statute still in force and based on the Iran-USSR Treaty made in 1921 and the Trading and Navigation Agreement of 1940, there are no borders in the Caspian Sea. These agreements only implied the establishment of a 10 mile zone in the sea for fishing.

After the collapse of the USSR, the number of the Caspian littoral states rose from two to five and negotiations on reflecting this in the legal status of the Caspian Sea have started and work on codifying a convention is being undertaken now.

It is also worth mentioning that from the legislative point of view the Caspian Sea is a lake, and therefore its status is to be defined by an agreement between the Caspian littoral states. The UN Convention on the Law of the Sea cannot be applied in this case.

The Embassy of Iran Islamic Republic
Press and Information Office