Russia's ally Kazakhstan permitted a large peace rally in its biggest city Saturday as authorities in the Central Asian country look to distance themselves from Moscow's sanctions-triggering military invasion of Ukraine.

Ex-Soviet Kazakhstan's regime regularly blocks political demonstrations but has appeared spooked by suggestions that unprecedented Western sanctions against Russia over Ukraine should target Moscow's allies too.

The Kazakh foreign ministry has stressed its neutrality in the conflict and this week invited Britain's ambassador for talks after a UK lawmaker on Monday appeared to call for sanctions against individuals in the country "complicit and supporting" Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

The protest in Almaty, a financial hub of 1.8 million people, gathered over 2,000 demonstrators, who stood for the Ukrainian national anthem and chanted pro-peace slogans and insults against Putin.

Kazakhstan's foreign ministry on Saturday said it had received assurances from London that the country would not be sanctioned by the United Kingdom over Russia's invasion.

Demonstrators showed their support for Ukraine at a rally in Almaty, capital of Russian ally Kazakhstan
Demonstrators showed their support for Ukraine at a rally in Almaty, capital of Russian ally Kazakhstan AFP / Malika AUTALIPOVA

The consultations came after lawmaker Margaret Hodge, a member of the opposition Labour party, asked UK foreign secretary Liz Truss whether individuals from "jurisdictions like Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan" would be targeted by sanctions over Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Truss replied that she would "look into the issues around Kazakhstan and other nations" during the Monday parliament session.

Moscow in January played a decisive role in bringing about an end to a bloody political crisis in Kazakhstan after Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev called in troops from the Russia-led Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) -- a six-member military bloc consisting of former Soviet states -- to bolster government control.

More than 200 people died in the clashes that followed largely peaceful protests against a fuel price hike.

Kazakhstan has blamed the violence on "terrorists" with international connections for the unrest, despite a lack of evidence for the theory.