Page last updated at 14:21 GMT, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 15:21 UK

Mid-East voices: Omar Mussa Soleiman

Israelis and Palestinians share their experiences and their thoughts on the possibility of peace.

I dream of peace so we can live together, Palestinians and Israelis, side by side
Omar Mussa Soleiman
Age: 24
Occupation: Student
Location: Rafah, Gaza

My grandfather was shot by an Israeli soldier at the threshold of our home. Many of my friends lost their lives. But each time I cry over a death of a friend, I become more determined to do what I can to stop this ugly war.

I dream of peace so we can live together, Palestinians and Israelis, side by side.

Unfortunately, there are many barriers to peace.

There are people on both sides who believe religion is a reason to continue fighting. Israelis teach their children to hate Arabs. Palestinians teach their children to hate Israelis.

Gaza has been such a stressful place since the Israeli offensive in January. So it is difficult to imagine people working for peace here. Gaza is also rapidly falling into the mud of a very fanatic ideology which rejects anything but the annihilation of Israel.

I would be willing to recognise the state of Israel so that Arabs and Israelis can live in peace.

Israel must open the crossings to Gaza. Later, they must withdraw from West Bank and give people the chance to live in better conditions.

Mr Obama is a very wise person. But it is difficult to imagine him pushing Israel to give concessions and risk falling out with them for the sake of the Palestinians.

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