NEW YORK (JTA) — Manny Pacquiao, the World Boxing Organization welterweight champion, will visit Israel, his Jewish promoter Bob Arum said.
Arum during a conference call Tuesday pledged to bring the Filipino boxer and lawmaker to Israel after Pacquiao fights Timothy Bradley in a title defense in Las Vegas on June 9.
"After the Bradley fight, we’re going to Israel," Arum said. "We’ve got plenty of time to discuss Manny’s next fight then."
Many Filipinos reside in Israel as migrant workers, facing challenges regarding the residency status of their children.
Earlier this month Pacquiao, who boasts a 54-3-2 record with 38 knockouts, and Floyd Mayweather both were ranked second by The Ring magazine as the best pound-for-pound fighters. The magazine symbolically left the top spot vacant; boxing fans have been clamoring for a fight between the two for years.
After Mayweather defeated Miguel Cotto, also a client of Arum, the promoter addressed the question as to why Pacquiao hasn’t fought Mayweather, invoking the name of Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels in the process.
"You see Mayweather is from the school of propaganda that Joseph Goebbels, who was Hitler’s publicist, adopted," said Arum in an interview with SportsRadioInterviews.com. "The more you say things over and over again, the more people believe them," he added, referring to Mayweather’s alleged request for drug testing as a pre-condition for a fight with Pacquiao.
Pacquiao is also an elected politician in the Phillipines, serving as senator of the Sarangani province.