One-sixteenth of Azerbaijan's territory should be attributed to Europe, head of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences (ANAS) Institute of Geography Ramiz Mammadov said on September 26.
According to Mammadov, the Gusar region, most of the Guba region, parts of Shabran and Khachmaz regions, more than half of Sumgayit, Khyzy region and the Novkhani settlement of Baku should be referred to Europe.
"The boundary of the continent should be between Baku's Fatmayi and Mehtiabad settlements," he said. "A large part of the territory of the Shuvalan settlement should be attributed to Europe. The boundaries of Europe in Azerbaijan should end around the Zira settlement of Absheron district. Half of the Zira settlement should be part of Europe and the other half part of Asia. Baku is not fully within the boundaries of Europe. Most of the Binagadi district and Shuvalan settlement of Baku and a part of the Mardakan settlement should be included in Europe. Overall, the central part of Baku should be attributed to Asia and the north-western part to Europe."
The boundary that separates Europe and Asia originates in the Black Sea, goes through the watershed of the Greater Caucasus, Dubrar Mountains, the northern part of the Absheron Peninsula and beyond -- across the Caspian Sea, connecting with the line which was suggested by Russian and Kazakh scientists. Then it crosses the Magistau Peninsula in Kazakhstan, along the eastern foothills of the Ural Mountains and then links to the border in the Arctic Ocean.
According to Mammadov, when the southern border between Europe and Asia was determined in 1964 the international scientific and geographical rules were not taken into account. In particular, the watershed of the Greater Caucasus Mountains and other natural and geographical factors were not considered and the border was arbitrarily drawn through the center of the Kuma-Manych Depression, Mammadov said.
"At that time the principle that the peoples of the Northern Caucasus are Muslim and they cannot go to Europe was put forward in the determination of the boundaries of the European continent. Therefore, the boundary was moved up a little. Thus, the North Caucasus remained in Europe," Mammadov said.
According to Mammadov, Azerbaijan can be considered one of the transcontinental countries included in Europe geographically.
He also said Russian scientists have offered conducting a joint assessment to determine the southern boundary of Europe.
"The assessment can be carried out in the near future. Upon completion of the assessment Azerbaijani and Russian scientists plan to raise the issue of redefining the southern borders of Europe at the International Geographical Congress," Mammadov said.