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A view of wine produced in the Golan Heights. Photo: David Silverman/Getty Images

The European Court of Justice ruled Tuesday that all European Union member states must label goods from Israeli settlements in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights — identifying them as products from an Israeli settlement.

Why it matters: The court’s decision could have a big influence on Israeli trade with the EU — and on U.S. trade with the continent. Israel asked both the Trump administration and Congress to put pressure on the EU not to implement the ruling.

  • The court ruled that "Israel is present in the territories concerned as an occupying power and not as a sovereign entity."

What happened: In 2015 the EU published guidelines for labeling goods from Israeli settlements. At the time, some EU member states implemented the guidelines and many ignored them.

  • After France decided to implement the guidelines, Yaakov Berg, an Israeli businessman who owns a winery in Psagot settlement near Ramallah in the West Bank, went to court in France.
  • A French judge issued an injunction and asked the French government not to label settlement goods until the European Court of Justice ruled on the matter.

Last June, the EU's legal adviser gave the court a legal opinion stressing that goods from Israeli settlements must be labeled so consumers would not be misinformed about their origin and to make clear they were not produced in Israel.

  • This opinion led the Israeli foreign ministry to predict that the court would rule to label goods from settlements.
  • It asked Berg to withdraw his lawsuit in order to prevent establishing a legal precedent, but he refused.

The big picture: Berg used U.S. law firms and lobbyists to mobilize support in Congress and the State Department. The Israeli government also asked for the Trump administration's help.

  • Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu raised the issue with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin.
  • Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) sent a letter to the EU's ambassador in Washington, warning him about potential consequences the ruling could have on trade between the U.S. and the EU due to U.S. laws against the BDS movement.
  • Sens. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) also sent a letter to U.S. trade representative Robert Lighthizer asking him to utilize a provision in U.S. trade deals with the EU as a way to prevent the implementation of the ruling.

Go deeper: Netanyahu vows to annex parts of West Bank if he wins re-election

Go deeper

Inside Biden's Taiwan flubs

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Twice this year, President Biden has blurted out commitments that the U.S. is prepared to defend Taiwan against a Chinese invasion — forcing the White House to walk back his statements and leading to confusion over a high-stakes national security policy.

Why it matters: U.S. defense officials have publicly aired their concerns that China will take Taiwan by force in the next four to six years, perhaps sooner. The president's position on this question may soon have real-world, life and death consequences.

"Atmospheric river" to whiplash Northern California from drought to flood

A map depicting 24-hour preciptation forecast (inches) ending Monday at 5a.m. local time. Photo: NOAA

A series of powerful "atmospheric river" storms are set dump historic amounts of rainfall across parts of drought-stricken California and the Pacific Northwest from this weekend, forecasters warn.

Why it matters: A strong atmospheric river, packing large amounts of moisture, is predicted to whiplash Northern California from drought to flood.

10,000 trees near giant sequoia groves to be removed after fires

A firefighter looks up at a giant sequoia tree after fire burned through the Sequoia National Forest near California Hot Springs, California, on Sept. 23. Photo: Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images

"Upwards of" 10,000 trees near giant sequoia groves have been "weakened by drought, disease, age, and/or fire" and must be removed in the wake of California's wildfires, the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks announced.

Why it matters: The damage to these trees, considered "national treasures," and work to remove them means a nearby key highway must remain closed to visitors as they have "the potential to strike people, cars, other structures, or create barriers to emergency response services," per a statement from the national parks.