TEHRAN (Shana) - Iran says it would welcome a call from Turkmenistan to resort international arbitration for resolving a gas row between the two countries, deeming it the last solution to the problem.
Managing Director of the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) Hamid Reza Araghi said: "Iran and Turkmenistan both have claims that need to be addressed but we believe that international arbitration is the last solution to the dispute."
"NIGC would welcome it if Ashgabat prefers to resort international arbitration for settling the row," the NIGC official said.
Earlier this year, Turkmenistan cut gas supplies to Iran, saying that Iran had failed to pay its debt.
"Iran always prefers negotiation over international arbitration for solving such matters," he added.
Iran claims that it incurred losses because of Turkmenistan's turning off the tap, but has demanded that the two solve the matter by holding more talks.
On January 1, the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) posted a press release that claimed Turkmengaz, the Turkmen state gas company, had cut gas supplies to Iran — violating a 20-year-old gas deal.