Saudi's powerful young royal meets Putin in Russia

Saudi's powerful young royal meets Putin in Russia
2 min read
30 May, 2017
Saudi Arabia's Defence Minister and Deputy Crown Prince Prince Mohammed bin Salman met Russian strongman Vladimir Putin on Tuesday in Moscow.
Bin Salman has travelled abroad to meet a number of world leaders recently [AFP]

Saudi Arabia's Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Tuesday, as the two oil giants discuss the war in Syria and energy issues.

The meeting between Putin and bin Salman - one of the most powerful figures in Riyadh - is the second in a year, and shows how the two oil producers are finding common ground in a bid to boost prices.

"The relations between Saudi Arabia and Russia are going through one of their best moments ever," Prince Mohammed told Putin, according to Reuters.

"We have a lot of common ground. As far as our disagreements are concerned, we have a clear mechanism of how to overcome them. We are moving forward quickly and in a positive way."

The two countries have moved closer in recent years, despite Moscow's close relationship with Iran and military backing for Bashar al-Assad in Syria's brutal war.

Saudi Arabia has been on the other side of the divide, backing rebels attempting to topple the Syrian regime.

Yet Tuesday's meeting was intended to find common ground on energy issues.

Earlier in the day, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak met his Saudi counterpart Khalid al-Falih to discuss global oil markets.

Both leaders were instrumental in the success of a 2016 global deal which saw oil production curtailed by 1.8 million barrels a day.

Last week, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) agreed to extend the landmark agreement as part of efforts to prop up prices and reduce bloated inventories.

The Saudi Crown Prince's visit to Moscow comes a week after US President Donald Trump's inaugural overseas visit to the country.

During the visit, Washington agreed to sell weapons and services to Riyadh in one of the "biggest single arms deals" in US history, as the two countries marked a new chapter in their relationship.

Sources confirmed to The New Arab that the deal will stretch past the $350 billion mark over the coming ten years, while other agreements were signed on increased economic cooperation.