Lapid Blasts Coalition Agreement with UTJ

Yesh Atid chairman says Netanyahu caved in to the demands of "a non-Zionist party" in coalition agreement with United Torah Judaism.

Ben Ariel ,

Yair Lapid
Yair Lapid
Amir Levy/Flash 90

Yesh Atid chairman MK Yair Lapid on Tuesday evening blasted the coalition agreement reached between the Likud and the haredi United Torah Judaism (UTJ) party.

The agreement, reached earlier on Tuesday, stipulates that child benefits and stipends for yeshivas, which were slashed when Lapid was Finance Minister, will be brought back to their previous levels. The agreement also stipulates a freeze on the controversial conversion law.

In response, Lapid said that the agreement is a "clearance sale of everything that is important to Israeli society at the expense of the taxpayer."

He further called the agreement "a complete surrender by the Prime Minister to the demands of a non-Zionist party, at the expense of the working and serving public.”

“We will continue to fight against the political blackmail so that the citizens of Israel, who go to work every day and pay taxes, will be fairly treated by the Israeli government in allocation of state resources,” said Lapid.

Meanwhile, another obstacle on the path to a new coalition was passed on Tuesday evening, as Likud representatives indicated to the Jewish Home party that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will grant its chairman Naftali Bennett his request to become the education minister in the coalescing coalition.

Shas chairman Aryeh Deri meanwhile is demanding to be appointed minister in three portfolios - finance, religious affairs and a portfolio that was not detailed. Jewish Home continues to oppose Shas's demand for complete control of the Religious Affairs Ministry.