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Turkish Prime Minister Visits Astana Amid Ankara-Moscow Standoff

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu (file photo)

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmed Davutoglu will start his two-day visit to Kazakhstan on February 5 amid the ongoing standoff between Turkey and Russia.

The diplomatic feud has put Kazakhstan in an awkward position, with Astana enjoying close ties with both countries.

The Kazakh presidential press service said Davutoglu is scheduled to discuss bilateral trade, energy issues, and "some important international matters" with Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbaev on February 6.

Kazakhstan is a member of the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union.

The Turkish prime minister's visit to Kazakhstan is the first since Ankara-Moscow relations plunged to their lowest point since the end of the Cold War.

Turkey shot down a Russian military plane on November 24, resulting in the death of a pilot, after the jet briefly entered Turkish airspace from Syria. Ankara says the pilot ignored several warnings from Turkish ground control about its position.

The incident drew strong reaction from Moscow and has led to a breakdown in relations between the two countries.

Based on reporting by and KazTag