No threat of full-scale war in the Caspian region - Russian Defense Minister

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ASTRAKHAN, July 5 (RIA Novosti) - There is currently no threat of a major war in the Caspian Sea region, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said Tuesday at a meeting with ministry officials.

"There is no threat of a full-scale war in the Caspian region but there are contemporary threats that must be combated jointly [by all states in the region]," Ivanov said in Astrakhan, a Russian city near the border with Kazakhstan.

According to Ivanov, Russia's position is: "Order in the Caspian region should be established and maintained by the countries in the region alone."

The minister said some agreements between these countries existed, but cooperation still needed to be developed.

According to the minister, a special conference in Astrakhan between the military leaders of the region's countries will discuss the situation in the region and draft a common policy on modern threats and challenges. The proposal to hold a full-scale conference came from the commander of the Caspian Sea Fleet, Ivanov added.

According to the minister, the Caspian region is currently stable and the level of military activity has not risen significantly.

"I would not say that military activity here is growing faster than in other regions," Ivanov said.

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