President Carter brings new Middle East peace initiative to Illinois College

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JACKSONVILLE, IL (KPLR) – For Illinois College senior Nicholas Hommowun, today`s speech by a former president was eye-opening.

'He`s just so energetic about what he does about trying to make changes,' says Nicholas Hommowun, a math education major.  'It`s exciting to see.'

The 39th president gave a lecture on the Jacksonville, Illinois campus today to a capacity crowd.

'I`m very grateful this afternoon to be here and being associated with this great college,' says Former President Jimmy Carter.

Carter was here to launch the Pathways to Peace Initiative and didn`t shy away from his solution for peace in the Middle East.

'It is to bring about a two state solution in the Middle East,' says Carter.  'It`s what the people of Israel would like to see, it`s what the Palestinians would like to see.'

Illinois College will send six students and six faculty members to the Carter Center based at Emory University in Atlanta and then onto the Middle East next summer.

'I would describe it as a seminar that`s going to involve faculty and students from Illinois College who are going to be focused on conflict resolution in the Middle East,' says Barbara Farley, Illinois College President.

'I totally would be up for that,' says an excited Hommowun when asked if he would be willing to go overseas.

'I really think the problem is we don`t see other people`s points of views.  We just try to push our own.  So we need to get people over there to see what`s going on and then say how can we change what`s going on over there based on their beliefs not on our beliefs.'