Gafni signs the agreement
Gafni signs the agreementSpokesperson

United Torah Judaism leaders Yaakov Litzman and Moshe Gafni signed a coalition agreement with the Likud on Wednesday evening.

As part of the agreement, UTJ will take on an additional role compared with what it held in the outgoing government. Litzman will head the Housing Ministry that will receive additional responsibilities from the Prime Minister.

Gafni will continue to chair the Knesset Finance Committee. Meir Porush will continue to serve as Deputy Minister of Education in charge of the haredi education system, while Uri Maklev will be appointed Deputy Transportation Minister.

UTJ will receive, for half of the term of the government, the chairmanship of the Constitution, Law and Justice Committee and in the other half will receive the chairmanship of the Committee for Public Inquiries.

"The faction maintained its principles in the current agreement, as it was in the previous agreement, in maintaining the rights of the haredi public, the Torah world, the haredi education system, maintaining the status quo, Jewish character and tradition, resolving the housing shortage, observing the Sabbath and Israel's holidays," UTJ said on Wednesday night.

Earlier on Wednesday evening, the Likud and Shas parties signed a coalition agreement under which Shas will receive three ministries, three deputy ministers and the chairmanship of a Knesset committee.

Minister Yariv Levin, who signed the agreement on behalf of the Likud, said, "I welcome the signing of the coalition agreement with Shas, the Likud's senior partner and the first of the partners of the right-wing bloc to have joined the government."

Former Minister Ariel Atias, who represented Shas for the signing, added, "The welcome cooperation between the Likud and Shas led to the signing of this agreement."

"Shas retained the principles that led it to the great achievement in the elections, both in maintaining education, the Jewish tradition and the status quo, and in addressing the weaker layers of society, in budgets through the Interior Ministry, and the Ministry for the Development of the Periphery, the Negev and the Galilee,” said Atias.