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U.S. Iranian Jews decline meeting with Rohani

JTA

September 24, 2013 | 9:34 am

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in Bishkek on Sept. 13. Photo by Mikhail Klimentyev/RIA Novosti/Kremlin/Reuters

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in Bishkek on Sept. 13. Photo by Mikhail Klimentyev/RIA Novosti/Kremlin/Reuters

The organized Iranian Jewish community in the United States has declined an invitation to meet with Iranian President Hassan Rohani during his visit to New York.

The Iranian American Jewish Federation received an official invitation to meet with the new Iranian President more than a week ago from a senior official at the Iranian mission to the United Nations, the Israeli daily Haaretz reported. The meeting also would have included Iranian Foreign Minister Mohamad Zarif and the only Jewish Iranian Member of Parliament Siamak Moreh Sedgh.

The Iranian officials are in New York for this week’s United Nations General Assembly.

Sam Kermanian, a special adviser to the Federation, told Haartetz that the group, in consultation with American Jewish leaders, decided not to attend the meeting because it could “send the wrong message to the administration and to American public opinion at this sensitive time.”

Meanwhile, Israel’s official representatives to the U.N. General Assembly will boycott Rohani’s address to the international body scheduled for Tuesday. It is not known whether they will leave the hall when the Iranian president begins speaking, or completely avoid the venue, Ynet reported.

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