Israeli President Peres to honor Spielberg, Wiesel

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s president will award this year’s Presidential Medal of Distinction to a group that includes Hollywood director Steven Spielberg and Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel.

Shimon Peres’ office said Thursday that Spielberg will be recognized for his contribution to cinema and “his unique contribution to the memory of the Holocaust, to the State of Israel (and) to the Jewish people.”

Wiesel, a world-renowned author and intellectual, survived the Holocaust and is being honored for his work commemorating it.

Israel’s Presidential Medal of Distinction is comparable to the France’s Legion of Honor or the Order of Canada. Previous winners include President Barack Obama, former President Bill Clinton, former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and conductor Zubin Mehta.

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