Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump announced in a Thursday tweet that the U.S. will recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which Israel first captured from Syria and occupied in 1967 and effectively annexed in 1981. 

Why it matters: This is a huge policy shift from the U.S. that could have repercussions for American policy towards other occupied areas in the world, like Crimea. It's also likely to infuriate Russia, an ally of the Assad regime in Syria. Trump's move is also a major boost for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in his election campaign ahead of Israel's April 9 elections.

What he's saying: "After 52 years it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s Sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which is of critical strategic and security importance to the State of Israel and Regional Stability!"

The state of play: Netanyahu spoke on the phone with Trump this afternoon and thanked him for his decision on the Golan Heights. "You made history," Netanyahu told Trump, according to an Israeli official.

Go deeper: Netanyahu rival thinks Trump could recognize Golan Heights to swing Israeli election

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New Jersey governor allows schools to reopen for in-person learning

Gov. Phil Murphy in December 2019. Phoot: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) announced Wednesday he will sign an executive order allowing private and public K-12 schools and universities to reopen for in-person learning in September.

The big picture: New York and New Jersey have now authorized school districts to begin reopening. Both states and Connecticut ordered travelers from 31 states to quarantine before crossing their state borders after they were able to manage the pandemic.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 1:30 p.m. ET: 20,412,501 — Total deaths: 744,649— Total recoveries: 12,629,465Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 1:30 p.m. ET: 5,163,509 — Total deaths: 164,994 — Total recoveries: 1,714,960 — Total tests: 63,252,257Map.
  3. Politics: Pelosi on state of coronavirus stimulus talks: "It's a chasm"
  4. Business: U.S. already feeling effects of ending unemployment benefits.
  5. Public health: America is flying blind on its coronavirus response.
  6. Education: Gallup: America's confidence in public school system jumps to highest level since 2004.

Pelosi on state of coronavirus stimulus talks: "It's a chasm"

Democrats and the Trump administration remain "miles apart" on negotiations over a coronavirus stimulus deal, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said on Wednesday.

Driving the news, via Axios' Dion Rabouin: Congress' failure to renew enhanced unemployment measures for millions of Americans at the end of July is already affecting consumer spending patterns, holding down retail purchases and foot traffic, economists at Deutsche Bank say.