Iran says its president turned down a meeting with Trump

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s foreign ministry says that Iranian President Hassan Rouhani turned down a meeting with President Donald Trump during his visit to New York to attend the United Nations General Assembly in September.

The Sunday report by the semi-official ILNA news agency quotes ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi as saying “an intention was expressed by the American side that was not approved by President Rouhani,” in reference to the alleged meeting request.

In 2013, then U.S. President Barack Obama and Rouhani spoke by telephone, the highest-level contact between the two countries in decades, prompting an outcry from Iranian hardliners.

Since then there has been no such communication between Tehran and Washington, which officially severed diplomatic ties in 1979.

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