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Obama, Iranian FM shake hands at UN

An Iranian news agency says President Barack Obama and Iran’s foreign minister shook hands when they ran into one another on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.

Tuesday’s report by the official IRNA agency quotes an unnamed diplomatic official as saying Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif came upon Obama “accidentally” and the two shook hands.

Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations Bashar Jaafari, left, talks with Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif during the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly at UN headquarters, Monday, Sept. 28, 2015. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations Bashar Jaafari, left, talks with Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif during the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly at UN headquarters, Monday, Sept. 28, 2015. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

A White House official confirms this Tuesday, saying “there was a brief interaction at the luncheon, where they shook hands.”

It represents the first handshake between an American president and Iran’s top diplomat since the 1979 Islamic Revolution ousted a pro-Western monarchy in Iran. The two countries have had no diplomatic relations since then.

— AP

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