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Israeli officials vow to cut cost of living

world Updated: Aug 07, 2011 12:05 IST

Israel's finance minister says the government will take swift action to reduce the soaring cost of living, looking to ease tensions a day after 250,000 people demonstrated over the rising prices.

Yuval Steinitz told Israel Radio on Sunday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is slated to announce the formation of a special committee of government ministers and experts to address the demands of protesters angered over housing costs and a growing wealth disparity.

The protest began three weeks ago when young Israelis pitched tents on a posh Tel Aviv boulevard complaining of housing costs. Since then, the protests have mushroomed.

Steinitz described the mass demonstrations as "impressive," and said Israel's cost of living is "unjustifiable and unreasonable."