Pope Francis met with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the Vatican, asking Tehran to help promote peace in the region. Nathan Frandino reports.
The leader of the Catholic world... meets the leader of 77 million Muslims. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Pope Francis shook hands for the first time at the Vatican Tuesday... amid a wider easing of relations between Tehran and the West. The Vatican says Francis called on Rouhani to promote peace in the Middle East and to help stop the spread of violence and arms trafficking in the region. Many Western countries accuse Iran of funding militant groups that they consider terrorist organizations. At the end of their 40-minute meeting, the two world leaders exchanged gifts... a Persian rug from Rouhani to the Pope with a commemorative medal given in return. The Vatican visit was one stop during Rouhani's first European trip, seen as a diplomatic tour to rebuild Iran's ties with the West after last year's nuclear deal and the subsequent lifting of sanctions.