All-expenses-paid trip to Israel
– mistress and nephew included. The miners rescued from the depths of a Chilean mine say they will give an affirmative response to Israel's invitation to
vacation in the country, on the condition that their families can join them.
Two weeks ago, Israel invited the 33 miners who were trapped in a Chilean mine for 69 days to visit Israel over the Christmas holiday.
Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov, who initiated the invitation, wanted to bring the miners and their significant others to Israel for "a spiritual journey in the holy land over the Christmas holiday, during which they would say prayers of thanksgiving for their safe rescue".
The Tourism Ministry offered them a fully-funded five to seven day stay which would include flights, accommodation and tours of the Christian holy sites.
The initiation was presented by Israel's ambassador to Chile David Dadon to the governor of the Atacama region, where the miners were rescued.
Last weekend, the governor told the Israeli ambassador that the miners would be happy to come to Israel and sent him a full list of the miners and their family members.
However, the list wasn't limited to the miners and their partners: It also included a long list of additional names. The list included 33 miners, 31 partners, two mothers of two single miners, the miners' 33 children, one grandchild, one nephew and one partner's daughter.
And if that wasn't enough, one miner asked to bring both his wife and his mistress.
The full and detailed list was sent to the Israeli Tourism Ministry which will have to decide whether to fund the trip for the entire group. Ambassador Dadon reported that according to information he received, the miners wouldn't agree to travel to Israel without their children and requested that the ministry make a decision as soon as possible so that the itinerary planning could begin.
The tourism minister's office stated that it would "give the issue serious consideration and formulate a concrete decision over the next few days."