A senior Kazakh lawmaker has sharply criticized a Russian legislator who reportedly called for the return of what he said were “Russian territories temporarily taken by Kazakhstan.”

In a statement made public on February 6, the chairman of the Kazakh parliament’s Committee for Foreign Ties, Defense, and Security, Maulen Ashimbaev, said that Russian State Duma Deputy Pavel Shperov’s remark was “unacceptable.”

Ashimbaev said that Shperov’s remarks “regarding territorial claims on Kazakhstan…do not correspond to the spirit of friendly and neighborly ties between Kazakhstan and Russia.”