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Kushner (L) with Netanyahu in 2017. Photo: Israeli Prime Ministry via Getty

The White House held talks with Israel's new government today, a month from its July 1 deadline to begin the process of annexing parts of the West Bank, to take the pulse on the Israeli side, U.S. and Israeli officials tell me.

Why it matters: The Trump administration has not yet decided whether it will give Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu the green light he is seeking to move forward on annexation.

  • U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman met today with Benny Gantz, Israel's defense minister and alternate prime minister, to discuss the annexation issue.
  • Several hours later, Friedman, Jared Kushner and White House envoy Avi Berkowitz had a conference call with Netanyahu and Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer.

Behind the scenes: Following those conversations, an Israeli official told me his impression is that the White House has cooled on annexation and wants to slow down the process before making a final decision.

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.

Go deeper: European leaders urge Netanyahu against West Bank annexations

Go deeper

Dave Lawler, author of World
Sep 6, 2020 - World

Trump hunts for foreign policy wins

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

President Trump is on the hunt for foreign policy wins he can showcase ahead of November's election — even if that means getting creative.

Why it matters: Trump's aides are working to recast him as "a true peacemaker," as national security adviser Robert O'Brien put it on Friday. “It’s happened in the Balkans, it’s happened in the Middle East, and we have more to come.”

UN poll: Most see climate change as global emergency during pandemic

Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg (C) fronts a Fridays For Future protest at the Swedish Parliament in Stockholm in September. Photo: Jonathan Nacksrtrand/AFP via Getty Images

64% of people from around the world say climate change is a global emergency, a United Nations poll published Wednesday finds.

Why it matters: It's the biggest global survey on climate change ever conducted, with some 1.2 million participants from 50 countries — including the U.S., where 65% of those surveyed view climate change as an emergency.

Collins helps contractor before pro-Susan PAC gets donation

Sen. Susan Collins during her reelection campaign. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

A PAC backing Sen. Susan Collins in her high-stakes reelection campaign received $150,000 from an entity linked to the wife of a defense contractor whose firm Collins helped land a federal contract, new public records show.

Why it matters: The executive, Martin Kao of Honolulu, leaned heavily on his political connections to boost his business, federal prosecutors say in an ongoing criminal case against him. The donation linked to Kao was veiled until last week.