Abe to meet Iran President Rouhani in N.Y. on Thurs.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will hold talks Thursday with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in New York, Japanese Foreign Ministry officials said Wednesday.

The two leaders will meet on the fringes of the U.N. General Assembly in New York after their foreign ministers on Monday discussed Iran's nuclear programs and its role in international efforts to deal with the use of chemical weapons against civilians in civil war-torn Syria.

Rouhani received a letter from Abe via his special envoy during a visit to Iran earlier this month. Rouhani met Masahiko Komura, vice president of Abe's ruling Liberal Democratic Party, on Sept. 8.

On Tuesday, Rouhani met with French President Francois Hollande, his first meeting with a Western leader. But Rouhani shunned a call by U.S. President Barack Obama for a one-on-one meeting earlier this week.