Canada fishing mogul begins expedition in Israel

From Sunday through December 3, Italo Labignan and 2 crew members will be sailing across the Mediterranean, Galilee and Red seas.

Canadian Fishing Network producer Italo Labignan arrived in Israel on Sunday night for a 10-day fishing expedition and will be taping his voyage for international television. From Sunday through December 3, Labignan and two crew members from the network will be sailing across the Mediterranean, Galilee and Red seas. Labignan sounded excited about the trip when The Jerusalem Post reached him on Monday. "It's great being here, and I'm just enjoying the Israeli weather," he said, adding that the trip marked the first time a sport fishing network had taken an interest in Israel. The fishing expedition, sponsored by the Foreign and Agriculture ministries, is collaborating with the Canada-Israel Committee (CIC) to showcase the hidden wonders of Israel's coral reef, according to a statement about the trip. CIC Israel representative Judy Zelikovitz said the crew was determined to reveal this natural beauty and would be putting together a show composed of undersea footage, as well as scenes from religious, archeological and other tourist sites to reveal Israel's rich and diverse heritage. She said that another goal of the trip was to expose the brighter side of Israel. "Unfortunately, through the eyes of many Canadians, Israel is seen merely as a country of conflict and dispute. This trip will hopefully reveal Israel's natural beauty and multicultural melting pot," she said. Zelikovitz added that she hoped the visit would reinforce the close-knit bond between Israel and Canada. By using fishing, a huge sport in Canada, the CIC hopes to target millions of viewers not only in Canada but across the globe, she said. The fishing expedition will be televised on The Sports Network (TSN) - the largest sports channel in the US - as well as on the World Fishing Network. The networks have over 50 million viewers in North America, Canada and Europe. The fishermen can look forward to saltwater, freshwater and trout fishing along the shorelines of Herzliya, Nahariya, Tiberias and Eilat. The journey will lead as far north as the Dan River and will include a visit to the desalination plant in Ashkelon as well as a trip to a fish farm in the North.