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All Eyes On Iran’s Rouhani At Second Day of UN General Assembly


New York – Iranian President Hassan Rowhani is set to address the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on Wednesday, with his speech expected to draw much attention as world leaders take to the podium for a second day.

Rouhani is speaking amid worsening tensions between the Iran and the U.S. and after he accused Washington of being the main backer of terrorism in the Middle East on Tuesday.

Rowhani is likely to respond to  U.S. President Donald Trump’s remarks to the world body on Tuesday, in which he blamed Iran directly for the recent attack on a Saudi Arabian oil plant.

There had been speculation, and even hope, that Trump and Rouhani would meet at the UN, but the Iranian president said there first must be a restoration of trust.

Rouhani did meet with European leaders, after France, Germany and Britain announced on Monday that they believed Iran “bears responsibility” for the oil plant attack.

Since Trump pulled Washington out of a 2015 deal between Tehran and world powers, the president has been imposing sanctions on Iran, seeking to cripple its economy and force the country to change its foreign policy.

Rouhani is expected to elaborate on an initiative dubbed HOPE, an acronym for Hormuz Peace Endeavour, aimed at establishing peace in the Persian Gulf without foreign influence.

Other leaders to address the UN General Assembly on Wednesday include Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, whose July call with Trump is at the heart of the impeachment inquiry launched by  U.S.bDemocrats against the  U.S. president on Tuesday.

Iraqi President Barham Salih and Colombian President Ivan Duque are also among those scheduled to speak.

Trump is expected to hold a wide-ranging press conference before he leaves New York.

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