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Netanyahu and Bolton meet in Jerusalem. Photo: Kobi Gideon/GPO via Getty Images

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked the Trump administration to recognize Israeli sovereignty in the occupied Golan Heights, which the international community regards as Syrian territory that has been under Israel's control since 1967's Six-Day War, after the U.S. military's pullout from Syria, an Israeli official tells me.

The backdrop: Netanyahu already raised the issue several months ago in a meeting with President Trump and with other senior U.S. officials. At the time, the Trump administration was cool on the idea and didn't signal to Israel that it was seriously considering such a move as it was concerned by a possible harsh reaction from Russia, the main international player in Syria and a staunch ally of the Assad regime, which claims Israel must withdraw from the Golan Heights.

  • Netanyahu decided to raise the issue again in the context of the U.S. pullout from Syria — hoping for a diplomatic gesture from Trump. In the last few months, Republican Sens. Tom Cotton and Ted Cruz have both put forward bills calling on the administration to recognize Israel's sovereignty in the Golan Heights, though the White House has yet to take a position on the bills.
  • Netanyahu raised the issue in his meeting today in Jerusalem with White House national security adviser John Bolton. In a press availability after the meeting, Netanyahu called the Golan Heights "tremendously important for our security."

Go deeper: U.S. recognition of Israeli Golan Heights claim would raise hopes, pose risks

Go deeper

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
48 mins ago - Health

Experts fear a bad flu season on top of COVID

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Public health officials are warning that the U.S. may be on the verge of a dangerous double whammy: COVID and flu, spreading simultaneously.

The big picture: The Delta variant is still circulating across the U.S., and the Omicron variant isn't far behind. On top of that, experts see potential warning signs of a bad flu season, which could leave millions of Americans vulnerable and strain health care resources.

Updated 2 hours ago - World

Australia joins U.S. in diplomatic boycott of Beijing Winter Olympics

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Photo: Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

Australia is joining the U.S. in a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games in protest of human rights abuses committed by China's government, Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed Wednesday.

Driving the news: After the Biden administration's announcement that U.S. officials won't attend the Games due to the ongoing genocide of Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang region of China, Morrison said at a Sydney briefing that Australia would follow suit as "it's the right thing to do."

Progressives to file resolution to strip Boebert's committee seats

Rep. Lauren Boebert walking through the Senate side of the U.S. Capitol earlier this month. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

House progressives are planning to introduce a resolution on Wednesday to strip Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) of her committee assignments, according to a Democratic aide familiar with the matter.

Why it matters: The move, which was first reported by the Washington Post, comes as progressives — anxious to see the right-wing firebrand face retribution for her recent comments — have grown frustrated by Democratic leadership's inaction on the issue.