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    FOREIGN MINISTERS CALL FOR CASPIAN PEACE & PARTNERSHIP

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    MOSCOW, APRIL 6 (RIA NOVOSTI) - The Caspian countries' Foreign Ministers share a basic task - to make the Caspian a region of peace, stability and mutually lucrative good-neighborly partnership, they say in a joint final statement, which sums up their conference.

    The ministers exchanged opinions on a wide range of regional issues with an emphasis on littoral interstate cooperation, reports Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs press and information department.

    The littoral countries' Presidents met in Ashkhabad, Turkmen capital, April 2002. The summit brought an understanding for a regular schedule of such meetings. In keeping with it, today's conferees considered prospects to convene a second Caspian summit in Teheran, the year's latter half. They blueprinted its tentative agenda.

    The Foreign Ministers agreed to carry on efforts on such aspects of the Caspian status as still remain unsettled. They are determined to achieve settlement on the basis of justice, general accord, and universally recognised standards and principles of the international law.

    The conferees greeted a framework convention, signed in Tehran, on Caspian maritime environment and wildlife protection.

    The Foreign Ministers emphasized combat against international terrorism, aggressive separatism, organized crime, drug trafficking and other threats and challenges as essential fields of Caspian cooperation.

    The conference gathered ministers of Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia and Turkmenistan, and proceeded in an atmosphere of friendship and mutual understanding.

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