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Kremlin explains Putin’s ‘hearty handshake’ with Saudi Arabia’s prince

Putin earlier greeted other leaders in the same way


Russian President Vladimir Putin and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud shared a hearty handshake at the G20 summit in Argentina because they have good personal relations, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

“These are good personal relations,” Peskov said commenting on the exuberant handshake before the summit’s plenary session, which came under the spotlight. Putin and Prince Salman shook hands as good friends, in a much more informal way than it usually happens at world leaders’ meetings.

According to the Kremlin, these good relations are a ground for “rather effective and mutually beneficial cooperation.”

Putin earlier greeted other leaders in the same way, Peskov said, declining to give further details.

Moscow highlights that Saudi Arabia is ready to take part in an investigation into the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who went missing after visiting the consulate general of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul on October 2. Saudi Arabia later announced that the journalist had been killed in a fight in the diplomatic mission. The international community has strongly condemned the murder and urged Riyadh to carry out a transparent investigation.

“We seek to continue fostering bilateral Russian-Saudi relations,” Peskov noted. “President Putin and the Crown Prince held a rather fruitful and substantive discussion on the sidelines of the summit.” He recalled that at the talks the sides discussed cooperation in the framework of OPEC plus.

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