TODAY   |  September 24, 2013

Obama, Iran president Rouhani to address UN

Of the 34 world leaders set to address the United Nations in New York Tuesday, all eyes are on President Obama and newly elected Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. U.S. and Iranian leaders have not met in more than three decades. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports.

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>>> in new york for the united nations general assembly . president obama addresses the body today as does the new president of iran , rouhani. but will they meet each other? andrea mitchell has the latest on what we can expect. good morning.

>> good morning, matt. the president is one of 34 speakers that will be speaking here today but will he meet even casually with another speak senator the newly elected leader of iran .

>> reporter: ready for his close up on the world stage, iran 's new president arrived in new york on monday and posted pictures of his arrival on twitter. with them both set to deliver speeches at the u.n. today, will they meet face to face? president obama is set to address the u.n. this morning and then hosts a lunch which rouhani won't attend. the white house has no idea what he might say. if they do meet it will be the first encounter between u.s. and iranian leaders in more than two decades. they have already exchanged letters.

>> from my point of view, the tone of the letter was positive and constructive.

>> reporter: still the white house has to reassure key allies like israel that say iran cannot be trusted. bill clinton said on the pbs news hour the u.s. should proceed but carefully.

>> the new president seems to want to talk with the united states and if we do this it has to be real.

>> reporter: meanwhile with all the motorcades and tightened security and bill clinton 's annual global initiative underway manhattan is wall to wall cars, cars going nowhere.

>> it's a mad house . it's impassable to get around the city.

>> secretary of state kerry will be meeting with the iranian foreign minister later today but if president obama meet with the president it could be a real test of whether there's a new opening.