gafni - Emil Salman - September 3 2010
Knesset Finance Committee Chairman, United Torah Judaism MK Moshe Gafni. Photo by Emil Salman
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MK Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism ), chairman of the Knesset Finance Committee, is threatening a coalition crisis unless the government acts quickly to lower housing prices, especially for the sake of young couples.

Gafni and his party are demanding aid for young couples buying their first homes in the periphery. He wants the state to provide grants, subsidize interest on mortgages and exempt sales of land for housing from VAT.

As the Knesset started its winter session yesterday, Gafni chose housing as the topic for his committee's first meeting, and announced housing prices would remain on the agenda until something happens.

"I am going to create a real crisis," said Gafni. "There is a coalition agreement between Likud and UTJ stating the housing issue will be dealt with. If it turns out it is not dealt with, we will act accordingly," he said.

Other MKs in both the coalition and the opposition expressed strong support for Gafni's stance.