President Hassan Rouhani’s chief of staff Mahmoud Vaezi announced on Wednesday that Rouhani had received eight requests from President Donald Trump, for a meeting, Tasnim reported. Vaezi said Trump’s requests were made during Rouhani’s visit to New York for the UN General Assembly meeting in September 2017.
Iran rejected all eight requests.
The NY Times suggested that, if confirmed, this assertion reveals a deep hostility of Iran’s top officials toward Trump (Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said Trump showed America’s “true face”), as well as the Trump administration’s eagerness for dialogue with the Islamic Republic.
White House and State Department officials have yet to respond to Vaezi’s statement.
Being snubbed to such an extent by his Iranian counterpart would explain why Trump has moved so fiercely to isolate Iran after the that UN session, culminating in his unilaterally withdrawing from the 2015 nuclear agreement, restoring and increasing sanctions against Iran, and included Iran on the US list of Muslim countries whose citizens are banned from entering the United States.