A potential encounter at the United Nations between Obama and Rouhani failed to take place on Tuesday as the Iranians indicated it was too complicated, senior Obama administration officials said.
Speaking to the United Nations General Assembly hours after Obama addressed the annual gathering of world leaders, Rouhani said he was prepared to engage in "time-bound and results-oriented" nuclear talks and did not seek to increase tensions with the United States. He repeated Tehran's position that Iran is not interested in atomic weapons. He also blasted the international sanctions against Tehran over its nuclear program, which Western powers and their allies fear is aimed at developing the capability to produce atomic weapons. "Contrary to the claims of those who pursue and impose them, it is not the states and the political elite that are targeted, but rather, it is the common people who are victimized by these sanctions," Rouhani told the 193-nation assembly.