Russia expands shelf in Sea of Okhotsk: PM
The Russian government on Saturday published a decree expanding its continental shelf in the Sea of Okhotsk, putting into law last year’s U.N. decision to grant the territory to Moscow.
The move was agreed with the U.N. Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf and Russia’s neighbors, including Japan, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said in remarks made while visiting the Kuril islands.
“I have signed a decree that sets the Russian border on the Okhotsk Sea continental shelf,” he was quoted by Russian agencies as saying.
“This means that we can develop our shelf where there are vast sources of raw materials, vast energy deposits.
“As a result our shelf got 50,000 square kilometers (19,000 square miles) larger,” he said.
The decree setting the area as Russia’s economic zone, which was posted on the government’s website on Saturday, is dated Aug. 15.
Under international law, a country has exclusive economic rights over the continental shelf within a 200-nautical-mile (370-kilometer) radius from its coast.
Russia has been claiming its economic right over large parts of the continental shelf, and earlier this month filed a submission at the U.N. commission for some 1.2 million square kilometers of the Arctic shelf, including the North Pole.