Sep. 27 - In the highest level contact between the two countries since the Iranian Revolution in 1979, U.S. President Barack Obama and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani speak by phone Friday. Gavino Garay reports.
In the first major contact between the two nations since the Iranian Revolution, U.S. President Barack Obama and Iranian president Hassan Rouhani speak on the phone -- a possible sign both are serious about reaching a pact on Iran's nuclear program. The White House tweeted out this photo of Obama on the phone with the Rouhani, after the call. The Twitter feed believed to be Rouhani's released this photo of the Iranian President on a plane, following his conversation with Obama. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SAYING: "Just now I spoke on the phone with President Rouhani of the Islamic Republic of Iran. The two of us discussed our ongoing efforts to reach an agreement over Iran's nuclear program. I reiterated to President Rouhani what I said in New York. While there will surely be obstacles to moving forward and success is by no means guaranteed I believe that we can reach a comprehensive solution." Earlier this week, Obama hoped to meet with Rouhani while both leaders were in New York for the U.N. General Assembly, but Iran decided a meeting would be too complicated. As president, Rouhani is the head of the government but has limited powers. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is the Supreme Leader of Iran, and has final say on domestic and foreign policy, but Rouhani says he has been given full authority to negotiate on the issue. The International Atomic Energy Agency has long struggled to strike a deal with Tehran to enable it to resume a stalled inquiry into suspected nuclear weapons research in Iran.