PM Netanyahu upset
Photo: Reuters

Coalition humiliated in Knesset

Coalition calls off land reform vote after failing to secure majority; PM Netanyahu furious warns partners

Achievement for opposition: The coalition failed Wednesday to secure the needed majority to pass the Israel Land Administration land reform, opting to call off the vote instead.


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's associates later said that the PM is furious over the humiliating coalition defeat. The sources warned that coalition partner Labor's failure to support the legislation will have ramifications the Barak-led party.


In a sign of escalation in the crisis, the PM later announced that a minister and deputy minister from each coalition faction that does not support the law will be dismissed from their post.


Knesset applause

Knesset members responded with applause after Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin announced that the vote no the proposed land reform will be called off. Labor Knesset Member Shelly Yacimovich said the dramatic announcement marked a "victory of ideals over interests."


The vote on the proposed reform is not expected to be held again before next Wednesday.


The Knesset was a scene of a fierce debate over the bill, while behind the scenes Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and senior coalition members attempted to elicit the support of Jewish Home, Labor, and Likud MKs to vote in favor of the law.


In the hours ahead of the vote, all members of the Labor faction "disappeared" from the Knesset. PM Netanyahu held some urgent phone calls in an effort to secure the required majority, but ultimately failed to do so.


Attila Somfalvi and Zvi Lavi contributed to the story


פרסום ראשון: 07.22.09, 19:14
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