Upon landing, two of the miners pulled out their video cameras to document the special event. "We are very excited and happy to be in Israel and look forward to touring the country," one of them told Ynet.
At the airport they were greeted by Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov, Chile's Ambassador to Israel Joaquin Montes and El Al CEO Eliezer Shkedi. The miners are scheduled to visit various holy sites, the Yad Vashem Museum and will also meet President Shimon Peres.
'Israel has a lot of heart'. Miners land at airport (Photo: Yaron Brener)
"Israel has a lot of heart," Raul Bustus told Ynet. "I looked at photos on the computer and the country just seems beautiful."
Mario Gomez noted that the Israeli people have big hearts and said Israel was amazing in its beauty. He also added he was looking forward to visiting the holy sites and thanking God for saving them.
During a press conference the miners' representative Jose Enriques was asked why they chose to visit Israel of all places. He replied that it was a privilege for them to be close to the place of God and be able to thank the thousands that prayed for their safe return. He also added that the visit was a chance for them to strengthen their faith in Jesus.
Misezhnikov said that the Tourism Ministry has prepared a richly diverse program for the miners. "I hope they undergo a religious and spiritual experience here in Israel and with the global media coverage hundreds of thousands across the globe will be exposed to the visit and follow suit."
- Follow Ynetnews on Facebook