Russian President Vladimir Putin said that coordination between Moscow and Riyadh is necessary to ensure security in the Middle East and North Africa. At the start of talks with Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz in Riyadh, Putin stressed the support of the two countries to efforts to counter terrorist threats, and settle the crises of the Middle East through political and diplomatic means.
For his part, the Saudi king said that Riyadh is seeking to work jointly with Moscow on all issues that can be solved, such as strengthening security and stability and combating extremism and terrorism. King Salman valued what he described as Russia's active role in the region and the world. .
Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in Saudi Arabia on Monday, kicking off a Gulf tour that includes the UAE, and Putin received a warm welcome after his first visit to Saudi Arabia in 12 years.
After arriving at Riyadh airport, the Russian president was greeted with artillery shots before his convoy was accompanied by a group of Saudi cavalry who carried Russian flags to Al-Yamamah Palace.
Putin was received at the palace by King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, according to footage broadcast on Saudi television.
Putin is holding talks with the Saudi monarch and between the Russian and Saudi delegations, as well as talks with Putin with the crown prince later on Monday. Oil is expected to dominate these talks.
Saudi Arabia and Russia signed 20 agreements covering several areas, most notably the economy, on the sidelines of Putin's visit, accompanied by the Minister of Energy and the President of the Russian sovereign wealth fund.
"We look forward to working ... always in all that will bring security, stability and peace, confront extremism and terrorism and promote economic growth," King Salman said at the start of the Saudi-Russian talks.
"The agreements between Russia and Saudi Arabia, especially in the field of energy, will have positive effects," he said.
For his part, the Russian president said, "Russia pays special attention to the development of bilateral relations with Saudi Arabia for more than 90 years."
Putin said trade exchange between Russia and Saudi Arabia rose by 15 percent last year.
Saudi Arabia, OPEC's biggest producer and largest exporter, and Russia, although not a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), have worked closely in recent years to reduce oil supply in a bid to raise prices.
In October 2017, Russia and Saudi Arabia signed an agreement protocol paving the way for the purchase of Russian S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems, but the deal was not finalized, as the kingdom chose to buy US missile systems.
Any progress in implementing plans Saudi Arabia has been considering for a long time to buy the S-400 missile defense system will lead to discontent in Washington, which announced at the weekend it would send about 3,000 extra troops and air defense systems to Saudi Arabia following last month's attack.
US President Donald Trump has resisted pressure to impose sanctions on Riyadh over human rights abuses, including the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, calling the sanctions a "clumsy" move that benefits only Russia and China.