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Benjamin Netanyahu (L), Benny Gantz. Photos: Sean Gallup/Getty Staff, Jack Guez/Getty Contributor

The White House is opposed to Israel's moves to annex the West Bank prior to the release of the Trump administration’s Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, senior U.S. officials tell me.

Why it matters: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Tuesday that he wants Israel's parliament, the Knesset, to vote on the annexation of the Jordan Valley as soon as next week, but the White House position dramatically reduces the chances of that happening.

Between the lines: The U.S. officials said the Trump administration has made its position clear to the Israeli government, and Netanyahu is aware that the U.S. doesn’t want Israel to take any unilateral steps before the peace plan is published.

Details: Netanyahu's new annexation statements came after his main opponent in upcoming elections, Benny Gantz, visited the Jordan Valley and announced he will annex the Jordan Valley "in coordination with the international community" if he wins on March 2.

  • Netanyahu quickly announced he is ready to bring annexation to a vote in the Knesset.
  • A Twitter brawl erupted between the prime minister and Gantz after Netanyahu's announcement — with the politicians attacking each other for not being serious about annexation.
  • The back-and-forth underscores the fierce fight for right-wing voters.

The bottom line: It is still unclear when the U.S. peace plan will be presented. U.S. officials say Trump is expected to announce his decision in the next few days.

  • President Trump’s senior adviser Jared Kushner had been scheduled to arrive in Israel Wednesday to discuss the issue with Netanyahu and Gantz, but cancelled his trip due to bad weather.
  • Kushner was also supposed to visit Israel to participate in an international conference on fighting anti-Semitism.

Go deeper: Trump to decide in coming days on when to release Middle East peace plan

Go deeper

Updated 5 hours ago - Sports

Olympics dashboard

Silver medalist Lilly King of Team USA (left) embraces gold medalist Tatjana Schoenmaker of Team South Africa on the podium during the medal ceremony for the Women's 200m breaststroke final on July 30. Photo: Clive Rose/Getty Images

🥇 : U.S. gymnast Suni Lee wins gold in the women's individual all-around

🚣‍♀️: Team USA women's eight rowing fails to reach the podium

🤸🏾‍♀️: Simone Biles reacts to "love and support" after withdrawing from all-around gymnastics and team finals, citing her mental health

🏊: Olympic swimmer Ryan Murphy wins Silver in 200m

📷: In photos: Tokyo Olympics day 6 highlights

🗓: The Olympic events to watch today

🏃‍: Female Olympians push back against double standard in uniforms

Go deeper: Full Axios coverage

Former Michigan Sen. Carl Levin dies at 87

Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI) in 2014. He died Thursday. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Former U.S. Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) died Thursday, his family and the Levin Center at Wayne Law — which bore his name — confirmed. He was 87.

Why it matters: The Detroit native served for 36 years in the U.S. Senate, serving twice as chairman of the Armed Services Committee and is credited with helping overturn the military's “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” rule.

Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Military members will be included in Biden's new COVID guidance

Joe Biden. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Members of the military will be required to get vaccinations or face regular testing, social distancing, mask mandates and restrictions on travel for work, the the Pentagon said on Thursday evening.

Why it matters: The policy was announced for federal workers and onsite contractors earlier on Thursday, part of several new Biden initiatives to get more Americans vaccinated and slow the spread of the Delta variant.