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‘Don’t complain about absence of change if you don’t contribute’

Hamze Awawde Member of YaLa-Young Leaders يالايا قادة الشباب יאללהמנהיגים צעירים

“Yala as I understand it is a youth network of free thinkers who are brave to collaborate with each other in order to build a region that fit our needs and wants as a majority. We want to end the Israeli occupation and we want a two state solution, good governing and a political system that ensures democracy and the freedom we want and equality and human rights. Yala has members from all over the Middle East and the North African region. We believe in soft change, change that comes from dialogue and mutual understandings and from education.”

Hamze Awawde is, as other Arabs and Israelis a member of YaLa-Young Leaders, a network of, as they say, over 445,000 Middle East & North Africa (MENA) young leaders who are fostering dialogue and change, #YaLa He lives in Dura, Hebron, and is a confident believer in peace.

Why did you choose to join Yala?
“It represents my values and it put me in equal position with Israelis and Arabs from over the region. It gave me the chance to express myself freely and participate on the leadership of such a hug young leaders network.”

You have been a peace activist for a long time, how do you keep your energy?
“You should not complain about absence of change if you do not contribute to it yourself. I want my people and my country to be secured from violence and bloodshed. I don’t want to see my brothers and sisters suffering anymore from the harshness of the occupation and neither I want them to be hopeless and turn to use violence to change the situation. I believe that my people deserve the justice and they are strong enough to make compromise and peace with Israel, so it’s a strength position and strong people who are able to go over the pain and look for a better future.”

I am sure you had, like many Palestinians, negative experiences with Israelis and the occupation. Still you manage to stay connected to them. How do you do that?
“Of course I had negative experience with some Israelis, either civilians or army. But I can’t deny that I also had a great experience with many Israelis who showed me support and shared a vision of a better future with me. I like to keep a positive look on life, because I believe that no nation is perfectly good.”

– What are your expectations in the peace process?
“I expect from the peace process to bring the justice to my people. We need it.”

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