September 25th, 2013
02:16 PM ET

Iran And U.S. Call For New Era Of Cooperation

A historic handshake didn't materialize at the United Nations Tuesday between President Obama and Iranian President Rouhani, but a new era of cooperation between the two countries may be on the horizon.

CNN Chief National Security Correspondent Jim Sciutto reports.

White House officials say the President was prepared to shake hands but President Rouhani was not, though both used the idea of mutual respect in their speeches.

President Obama said, "I do believe that if we can resolve the issue of Iran's nuclear program, that can serve as a major step down a long road towards a different relationship – one based on mutual interests and mutual respect."

President Rouhani: "Iran seeks constructive engagement with other countries based on mutual respect and common interest, and within the same framework does not seek to increase tensions with the United States."

Obama then publicly directed Secretary of State John Kerry, seated in the audience not far from his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Zarif, to immediately pursue a nuclear agreement with Iran, though he cautioned the U.S. must know Iran is serious.

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