Saudi Arabia considers buying Russia's S-400 air defence system

Casey Dawson
October 7, 2017

After 81-year-old King Salman landed in Moscow on Wednesday evening, the escalator he used to descend from his plane malfunctioned, stopping midway and forcing the aging monarch to walk down the steps himself - after several moments paused awkwardly.

Saudi Arabia has agreed to buy Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile systems, Saudi-owned al-Arabiya television reported on Thursday.

Addressing a plenary session of the Russian Energy Week, which kicked off in Moscow on October 3, he said the two countries share fundamental interests, including energy policies, fighting cybercrime, non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, anti-terrorism efforts and dealing with regional conflicts.

OPEC and some other non-member producers, including Russian Federation, have agreed to cut crude output which has helped prop up oil prices.

"The leaders of other countries welcomed the creation of yet another commission, the commission on defense industry cooperation, which should hold its first meeting before the end of year", Lavrov said after the talks of the Russian president with the Saudi king. Kirill Dmitriev, chief executive of RDIF said in an interview with CNBC the two countries "could join forces" and "solve some of the issues in Syria ...we can solve lots of geopolitical issues by working together". The agreement was due to expire in March 2018.

Oil prices rose about 2 percent on Thursday as signs Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation would limit production through next year pushed the USbenchmark back above $50 a barrel.

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Marilou Danley's sisters were interviewed by Australia's Channel 7 TV network with their faces obscured and their names withheld. Knights told Australia's Channel 9 from his home near Brisbane, "It seemed like he just looked after my aunty and that was it".

Ties between the two countries were often strained in the past.

Russian President Vladimir Putin distanced himself from President Donald Trump on Wednesday, dismissing the USA president as a man he's met once but has no personal relationship with. "We also support the Astana-based talks, the importance of integrity of Syrian territories and the Syrian institutions".

Salman also told Putin he hoped to see "a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital" established in the future, as a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Russian Federation has prepared a package of around US$3.5 billion arms sales to Saudi Arabia, which includes several divisions of S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems.

Putin said on Wednesday it was possible to extend an OPEC deal to cap oil output "at least until the end of 2018".

Saudi King Salman is now in Russian Federation as part of a state visit, the first to Moscow by a reigning Saudi monarch.

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