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Macron (R) with Netanyahu. Photo: Haim Tzach - Pool/Getty Images

Several European leaders have sent personal letters to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in recent days warning him against annexing parts of the West Bank, Israeli and European officials tell me.

Why it matters: Netanyahu is hoping for a green light from the U.S. to move ahead on annexations as early as July 1, but the letters from the leaders of Italy, France, Spain and the U.K. are signals of the strong international pushback Israel would face.

What they're saying: French President Emmanuel Macron wrote Netanyahu on Monday "in the spirit of friendship," to say that "unilateral steps in the West Bank... will undermine the stability in the Middle East."

  • Only dialogue with the Palestinians and a just and balanced solution will give Israel peace, security and stability," according to the text of the letter, seen by Axios.
  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson wrote a similar letter in coordination with the French, European and Israeli officials told me. It's unclear if German Chancellor Merkel also wrote to Netanyahu.
  • The Spanish and Italian prime ministers also stressed that any steps taken by Israel must result from negotiations with the Palestinians and comply with international law.

The big picture: The coalition deal that allowed Netanyahu to form his new government says he can bring "the understandings with the Trump administration" on annexation up for a vote in his Cabinet or the Knesset as early as July 1 — but only with the full agreement of the White House.

The latest: Netanyahu said on Monday that the July 1 deadline won’t change.

Go deeper: Palestinians say agreements with U.S. and Israel void due to annexation plans.

Go deeper

Sep 2, 2020 - World

Saudi Arabia to allow all Israel-UAE flights to use its airspace

Kushner speaks after landing in Abu Dhabi on Monday. Photo: Arim Sahib/AFP via Getty

Saudi Arabia has agreed to allow all flights between the United Arab Emirates and Israel to pass through its airspace, following lobbying from the Trump administration.

The backstory: The UAE had made a formal request of the Saudis as part of their normalization deal with Israel, which includes commercial air travel between the countries.

Broncos and 49ers the latest NFL teams impacted by coronavirus crisis

From left, Denver Broncos quarterbacks Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Jeff Driskel during an August training session at UCHealth Training Center in Englewood, Colorado. Photo: Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown the NFL season into chaos, with all Denver Broncos quarterbacks sidelined, the San Francisco 49ers left without a home or practice ground and much of the Baltimore Ravens team unavailable, per AP.

Driving the news: The Broncos confirmed in a statement Saturday night that quarterbacks Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Blake Bortles were identified as "high-risk COVID-19 close contacts" and will follow the NFL's mandatory five-day quarantine, making them ineligible for Sunday's game against New Orleans.

Updated 11 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: WHO: AstraZeneca vaccine must be evaluated on "more than a press release."
  2. Politics: McConnell temporarily halts in-person lunches for GOP caucus.
  3. Economy: Safety nets to disappear in DecemberAmazon hires 1,400 workers a day throughout pandemic.
  4. Education: U.S. public school enrollment drops as pandemic persists.
  5. Cities: Surge in cases forces San Francisco to impose curfew — Los Angeles County issues stay-at-home order, limits gatherings.
  6. Sports: NFL bans in-person team activities Monday, Tuesday due to COVID-19 surge — NBA announces new coronavirus protocols.
  7. World: London police arrest more than 150 during anti-lockdown protests — Thailand, Philippines sign deal with AstraZeneca for vaccine.