Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said in an interview with Kazakh state media that Vladimir Putin promised him that “the land issue will never be raised.”
The Kazakh president added: “Therefore, there is no need to worry (…) Our borders are fully drawn and defined.”
Kazakhstan is a former Soviet republic, independent since 1991, and shares with Russia one of the longest borders in the world, stretching about 7,000 km.
In recent years, many Russian lawmakers, including two members of Putin’s party, have questioned these limits.
The issue is particularly sensitive in Kazakhstan due to the presence of a large Russian minority living in the north of the country.
In 2014, Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea and the outbreak of war between pro-Russian separatists and Kiev raised concerns that this scenario could be repeated in Kazakhstan.
The recent deployment of more than 100,000 Russian soldiers on the Ukrainian border has raised Western fears of a possible attack on Kiev, despite the Kremlin’s denials.
But Kasim-Jomart Tokayev described in his Thursday interview Russia as a “neighbour, a gift from heaven,” and the statements of Russian deputies who questioned Kazakhstan’s borders as “unreasonable and inappropriate.” “It is clear that the (Russian) authorities and the Kremlin do not support such a position,” he noted.
Last month, Kazakhstan witnessed bloody riots after peaceful protests, killing more than two hundred people and prompting Kassym-Jomart Tokayev to request the intervention of a Russian-led military unit for help.
This force, which includes more than two thousand soldiers, left Kazakhstan in mid-January.
It was published within the framework of a military alliance between the republics of the former Soviet Union is the “Collective Security Treaty Organization”.