Twenty Palestinian students leave Gaza for the first time to meet Desmond Tutu, Graça Machel and Mary Robinson in South Africa, and Gro Brundtland in Norway.
"Non-violence is the only way of cleansing society of the tiredness, brutalisation and despondency it has been forced into." Ela Bhatt
During their first visit to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory in August 2009, the Elders visit peaceful protestors in the West Bank village of Bil'in, a Palestinian family living on the pavement after being evicted from their Jerusalem home, and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah.
On the second day of their visit to the Middle East in August 2009, The Elders meet Israeli President Shimon Peres and Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salaam Fayad. They also cross into the West Bank, where they meet women from the Qalandia refugee camp and listen to the concerns of young Palestinians.
The Elders' first day in the Middle East, proved to be moving, thought-provoking, frank and inspirational as they met a diverse group of Israeli citizens and heard a wide range of thoughts and perspectives