Tehran Convention
Tehran Convention


The establishment of the Conference of the Parties (COP) and the Secretariat is regulated in Part VI of the Tehran Convention.

The Secretariat supports the COP and the implementation of the Tehran Convention and its Protocols in organizational, administrative and technical matters. As such, it assists the littoral states in the preparation and servicing of the COPs and other regional meetings. The Secretariat oversees and promotes the implementation of the Decisions of the COP and contributes to the coordination with partners and donor organizations.

The Tehran Convention COP 1 in 2007 requested the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) to carry out the functions of the Convention Secretariat ad interim until a permanent Convention Secretariat is put in place. This request was reconfirmed by the second, third and fourth COPs in 2008, 2011 and 2012. Thus, since 2007 the Tehran Convention interim Secretariat is located within the UNEP Europe Office in Geneva, Switzerland.

At the COP 5 in 2014, the Contracting Parties decided on the location and arrangements of the Convention Secretariat. In this decision, UNEP was requested to permanently administer the Secretariat of the Convention, which is to be located in the Caspian Sea region on a rotating basis in alphabetical order of the English language, starting in Baku, Azerbaijan.

The United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) at its first session in 2014 authorized the Executive Director to administer the Convention Secretariat on the basis of a mutually agreed Trust Fund.
While preparations to implement the decisions of the COP 5 and the UNEA are ongoing, the UNEP Europe Office continues to carry out the functions of the interim Secretariat to this day.

Our Team

The composition of the interim Secretariat

  • Mahir Aliyev



  • Mateusz Benko

    Tehran Convention Officer


  • Frits Schlingemann

    Senior Advisor


  • Christina Russkikh

    Communication and Advocacy Officer