By Simone McCarthy

Chinese leader Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet on the sidelines of a summit in Uzbekistan next week, Russia’s envoy to Beijing Andrey Denisov told reporters on Wednesday, according to Russian state news agency Tass.

The expected meeting at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit would be the first face-to-face between the two leaders, who have established a close relationship, since the Russian invasion of Ukraine earlier this year.

It would also be the first overseas trip for Xi since the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.

The SCO summit will be held on September 15 to 16 in Samarkand.

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