U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin shake hands during their meeting at the United Nations General Assembly. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin met on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly on Monday (September 28). Earlier at UNGA, Obama and Putin offered different views on how to resolve the Syrian crisis. Obama described Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as a 'tyrant' and as the chief culprit behind the four-year civil war in which at least 200,000 people have died and millions driven from their homes. Putin, in contrast, told the gathering of world leaders that there was no alternative to cooperating with Assad's military in an effort to defeat Islamic State militants, which have seized parts of Syria and neighboring Iraq. Putin called for the creation of a broader international anti-terrorist coalition with majority-Muslim countries as members, an appeal that may compete with the group that the United States has assembled to fight Islamic State. The disagreement over Assad raised questions about how Obama and Putin might find common ground during this meeting on the sidelines of the General Assembly. Earlier on Monday (September 28), at a lunch hosted by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the two men shook hands and raised champagne glasses. In a photograph from the lunch, Obama appears grim in contrast to a smiling Putin.