Turkmen, Azeri leaders to mend ties after Caspian Sea row

The leaders of Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan was involved in a long-running dispute over the resource-rich Caspian Sea.

Turkmen, Azeri leaders to mend ties after Caspian Sea row

The leaders of Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan, involved in a long-running dispute over the resource-rich Caspian Sea, agreed on Thursday to try to improve their strained relations, Turkmen state media reported.

The two former Soviet republics dispute ownership of several Caspian oil and gas fields, which led Turkmen President Kurbanguly Berdymukhamedov in July to order his government to take Azerbaijan to an international arbitration court.

He has also announced plans to build a navy in the Caspian.

"The two sides discussed important issues of bilateral cooperation as well as some other topics of mutual interest due to be reviewed at the forthcoming informal meeting of the heads of Turkmenistan, Russia, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan in Aktau (Kazakhstan)," state news agency Turkmen Khabarlary said.

The meeting is due to take place on Sept. 11 and 12.

Berdymukhamedov called Azerbaijan's Ilham Aliyev by telephone to congratulate him on Ramadan, the holiest month for Muslims. He also invited Aliyev to a car race in Turkmenistan after the Aktau meeting.

The agency said both presidents expressed readiness to imrpove relations.

The delimitation of the Caspian Sea, which contains vast oil and gas deposits, has long been a thorny issue, and centres on whether the body of water is a sea or an inland lake.


Reuters

Last Mod: 04 Eylül 2009, 17:34
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