UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The presidents of China, Russia, Iran and the United States are scheduled to speak at the 70th annual U.N. General Assembly of world leaders in September — a rare appearance for Russian President Vladimir Putin and the first for Chinese President Xi Jinping.
The United Nations issued its first draft list of speakers Monday for what could be its largest ever gathering of world leaders.
Pope Francis is also set to address the General Assembly a few days before President Barack Obama, Putin, Xi and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani speak at the gathering.
Two years ago, a historic phone call between Obama and Rouhani during the U.N. meeting prompted speculation of a rapprochement between the nations and resulted in an interim nuclear pact that was followed by the landmark nuclear deal announced this month.
The nuclear deal, and its implications for the Middle East and beyond, is expected to be a key topic in speeches this year.
The list of speakers is expected to change several times before the high-level ministerial meeting begins Sept. 28, but so far countries not sending a head of state include India, Britain, Syria, Saudi Arabia and North Korea.
Other countries sending heads of state include France, Mexico, Nigeria, Afghanistan, Ukraine, Egypt, Venezuela, South Sudan, Libya, Yemen and Iraq.
The Palestinians are listed as sending their head of state, while Israel is sending its head of government.