World

Pope meets with Israel president: Look for what unites, overcome that which divides

  • Pope Francis talks with Israel's President Reuven Rivlin during a private audience in the Pontiff's private library at the Vatican Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015. (Tony Gentile/Reuter via AP Pool)

    Pope Francis talks with Israel's President Reuven Rivlin during a private audience in the Pontiff's private library at the Vatican Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015. (Tony Gentile/Reuter via AP Pool)  (The Associated Press)

  • Pope Francis and Israel's President Reuven Rivlin exchange gifts during a private audience in the Pontiff's private library at the Vatican Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015. (Tony Gentile/Reuter via AP Pool)

    Pope Francis and Israel's President Reuven Rivlin exchange gifts during a private audience in the Pontiff's private library at the Vatican Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015. (Tony Gentile/Reuter via AP Pool)  (The Associated Press)

  • Pope Francis poses with Israel's President Reuven Rivlin and his wife Nechama during a private audience in the Pontiff's private library at the Vatican Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015. (Tony Gentile/Reuter via AP Pool)

    Pope Francis poses with Israel's President Reuven Rivlin and his wife Nechama during a private audience in the Pontiff's private library at the Vatican Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015. (Tony Gentile/Reuter via AP Pool)  (The Associated Press)

Pope Francis has met with Israel's president and given him a medallion that reads: "Look for what unites, overcome that which divides."

President Reuven Rivlin met with the pope for about 30 minutes in Francis' study Thursday.

The Vatican said the meeting, and subsequent talks with the Vatican secretary of state, focused on Mideast peace "and the need and urgency to promote a climate of trust between Israelis and Palestinians, and to restart direct negotiations to reach an agreement that is respectful of the legitimate aspirations of the two peoples."

Reporters said Francis presented Rivlin with a new bronze medallion featuring a rock split in two and held together by an olive branch emerging from the fissure. The inscription reads "Look for what unites, overcome that which divides."