Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in Riyadh today for a historic two-day official visit to Saudi Arabia. It is the first such visit to the Kingdom by a Russian leader.
President Putin received a red carpet welcome upon arriving at King Khalid International Airport, where he was greeted by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz.
King Abdullah and President Putin held a round of official talks at the King’s palace in Riyadh tonight. The King also hosted a State dinner in Putin’s honor and presented him with the King Abdulaziz Medal.
While in the Kingdom, Putin will meet for talks with King Abdullah and Crown Prince Sultan. After the talks, Saudi Arabia and Russia are expected to sign a series of agreements. Putin is also scheduled to visit the National Museum.
Saudi-Russian ties have grown closer since King Faisal visited the former Soviet Union in 1932. In 2003, then-Crown Prince Abdullah paid an official visit to Russia, which resulted in a landmark agreement on energy cooperation between the two countries. Today, Saudi-Russian cooperation extends beyond oil and trade to a variety of areas, including culture, sports and launching satellites into space.