Actor Richard Gere (search) told Israel's foreign minister Wednesday that Palestinians and Israelis must put the past behind them and take advantage of what he called a "special moment" to make peace.

Gere met with Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom (search) during his third visit to the region in recent months.

"There is a great instinct and need on both sides of this conflict to find a peaceful solution that is suitable, that is genuine, that is real, and it can be found and this is a moment," Gere said.

Since his arrival several days ago, Gere met with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas (search) and Israel's two vice-premiers, Shimon Peres and Ehud Olmert. Gere also toured Israel and the West Bank in March and June of last year.