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Iran, Saudi Arabia, UAE, others shower Russia’s Putin with congratulatory messages

Several leaders in the region have extended their congratulations to Russia’s President Vladimir Putin over his reelection, as Western countries condemned the Russian elections as unfair.
Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan in Saint Petersburg on Oct. 11, 2022.

Russia’s allies in the region were quick to congratulate President Vladimir Putin on his reelection, as the Russian leader faces growing Western isolation over the war on Ukraine.

Putin secured 87.3% of the votes cast during the three-day elections that closed on Sunday, the Russian Central Election Commission announced on Monday, in elections international organizations say were marred by irregularities and no real competition.

With this latest victory, Putin secured a fifth six-year term that, if completed, will make him the longest-serving leader since Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin who ruled over the Soviet Union from 1922-1953.

Here’s a roundup of the countries in the Middle East that congratulated Putin.


Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi was among the first to congratulate Putin on his victory in the Russian presidential elections.

“The President of the Islamic Republic of Iran in a message sincerely congratulated Vladimir Putin on his decisive victory and reelection as the President of the Russian Federation,” state news agency IRNA reported on Monday.

Tehran and Moscow are allied on several regional issues, including in Syria where both sides have backed President Bashar al-Assad against the rebels throughout the civil war.

The two countries have strengthened their military and economic ties since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, as they both face international sanctions and political isolation. Both countries are heavily sanctioned by the West — Russia over its war on Ukraine and Iran over its nuclear program.


Syrian President Bashar al-Assad also congratulated Putin, his main ally, on his victory in the presidential elections.

“I congratulate you on your victory and your reelection as President of the Russian Federation with a large majority, which confirms the high confidence of the Russian people in you, your national policies, and your strategic visions that stem from [the people’s] interests and are based on the great position that Russia has long occupied in the world, due to its possession of a long history and civilization,” Assad said in his congratulatory telegram, carried by the official SANA news agency.

He further expressed hope that the bilateral relations witness more progress in the future.


Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also congratulated Putin over his electoral victory, the Turkish presidency said Monday, adding that Ankara is ready to serve in a mediating role between Ukraine and Russia.

Gulf countries

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud congratulated Putin on his reelection for a new presidential term. In a cable carried by the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA), the Saudi monarch further “praised the distinguished relations between the two friendly countries and peoples, which all seek to strengthen and develop in all fields.”

In another post on X, the SPA said Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman also congratulated Putin on his victory in the Russian elections.

The United Arab Emirates’ president, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, also extended his congratulations to Putin.

The state-run Emirates News Agency (WAM) said on Monday that several other Emirati officials, including the ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, congratulated the Russian leader.

For their part, Qatari officials wished Putin success in leading the country as president. Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani congratulated Putin and hoped for stronger relations between the two countries. The deputy emir of the Gulf nation, Abdullah bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, also sent his congratulations, according to Qatar’s official news agency.

Kuwait was the first Arab country to congratulate Putin.

According to the official Kuwait News Agency (KUNA), Kuwait’s Emir Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah sent a cable of congratulations to the Russian leader, expressing hope for further developing relations between the two countries.

Bahrain’s Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, who also serves as the country’s prime minister, congratulated Putin in a cable and praised Bahraini-Russian relations, according to the official Bahrain News Agency.

Oman’s Sultan Haitham bin Tariq Al Said followed suit, wishing Putin success in carrying out his presidential duties, the official Oman News Agency reported. He also expressed hope to further develop existing relations between the two countries.

The oil-rich Arab Gulf countries have in recent years strengthened their relations with Russia amid regional shifts — all the while maintaining their ties with the United States, Russia’s main rival. 


Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas extended his congratulations to Putin over his reelection.

According to the official Wafa news agency, Abbas “wished President Putin continued success in performing the noble tasks entrusted to him, and achieving the goals and aspirations of him and the friendly Russian people.”

The Palestinian leader further praised Russia’s support for the Palestinian people.

Russia has emerged recently as a potential mediator to end Palestinian division. Moscow hosted rival Palestinian factions earlier this month for talks on reconciliation. 


Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune also congratulated his Russian counterpart on his reelection, a press statement by the Algerian presidency said.

In stark contrast to the congratulatory messages pouring in from the Middle East, Western countries have not been welcoming of Putin’s reelections. Several countries, including France, Germany and Ukraine, dismissed the Russian elections. The United States and the European Union said in separate statements that the elections in Russia are not fair or free.