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What to expect from Putin's visit to Saudi Arabia

Russian President Vladimir Putin is set to visit Saudi Arabia on Oct. 14 with a set of economic and security issues on the agenda.

Vladimir Putin is due to arrive in Saudi Arabia Oct. 14, 2019. The Russian president made his only trip to Riyadh way back in 2007, and the two leaders have refrained from top-level visits until Saudi King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud made a historic first visit to Russia in October 2017. One must bear in mind that the Saudi monarch had never traveled to Moscow during the Soviet era. Formal bilateral ties were severed in 1938 following the execution of Karim Khakimov, who was called “Red Pasha” — an outstanding Soviet diplomat, the ambassador to Saudi Arabia and a personal friend of King Ibn Saud.

It is not only the geopolitical landscape but also the gradually broadening agenda for bilateral talks that stir up interest in Putin’s trip. Both countries’ officials reported intense preparatory work ahead of the leaders’ meeting.

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