Iranian president defends his foreign minister's visit to G7

Iran's president defends foreign minister's surprise visit to G7 summit, says Iran must negotiate way out of crisis

TEHRAN, Iran -- Iran's president is defending his foreign minister's surprise visit to the G-7 summit, saying he's himself ready to go anywhere to negotiate a way out of the crisis following the U.S. pullout from the nuclear deal.

Hassan Rouhani said in a televised speech Monday: "If I knew that going to a meeting and visiting a person would help my country's development and resolve the problems of the people, I would not miss it."

Rouhani stressed that "we have to negotiate, we have to find a solution, and we have to solve the problem."

He added there will be a meeting of Iranian officials later in the day to discuss Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif's visit Sunday to France's Biarritz, where leaders of the Group of Seven rich democracies were meeting.