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Vladimir Putin. Photo: Mikhail Klimentyev\TASS via Getty Images

The Trump administration has made it clear to the Kremlin that the U.S. fully supports Israeli airstrikes in Syria while Iranian forces, Hezbollah and pro-Iranian militias are still operating in the country, a senior U.S. official told me.

Why it matters: Israel airstrikes against Iranian targets in Syria continue every other week. Last night, a rocket was fired from Syria and landed in an Israeli military base on the border with Syria in the northern part of the Golan Heights. Israeli intelligence services think it was likely fired by pro-Iranian militia in Syria, and the Israeli air force retaliated against Syrian military bases. According to reports, three Syrian soldiers and seven non-Syrian militiamen were killed.

Details: The senior U.S. official told me that State Department and White House officials have conveyed the message to the Russians several times in the last few months. The U.S. official added that the broader message to the Russians was that withdrawal of Iranian and Iranian-backed forces from Syria isn't just an Israeli demand, but an American one too.

The big picture: Three weeks from now, Israeli national security adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat will host a trilateral summit in Jerusalem with his U.S. counterpart John Bolton and his Russian counterpart Nikolai Patrushev. This will be an unprecedented event.

Israeli officials told me the summit will focus on Syria and Iran. They added that they wanted to host this dialogue and have worked on it for a long time because they want to see the U.S. and Russia work together on a political solution in Syria that will push Iranian forces out of the country.

Go deeper

2 hours ago - Health

Biden says it's "not the time to relax" after touring vaccination site

President Biden speaking after visiting a FEMA Covid-19 vaccination facility in Houston on Feb. 26. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Biden said Friday that "it's not the time to relax" coronavirus mitigation efforts and warned that the number of cases and hospitalizations could rise again as new variants of the virus emerge.

Why it matters: Biden, who made the remarks after touring a vaccination site in Houston, echoed CDC director Rochelle Walensky, who said earlier on Friday that while the U.S. has seen a recent drop in cases and hospitalizations, "these declines follow the highest peak we have experienced in the pandemic."

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Health: Most COVID-19 survivors can weather risk of reinfection, study says — "Twindemic" averted as flu reports plummet amid coronavirus crisis
  2. Vaccine: FDA advisory panel endorses J&J COVID vaccine for emergency use — About 20% of U.S. adults have received first vaccine dose, White House says — New data reignites the debate over coronavirus vaccine strategy.
  3. Economy: What's really going on with the labor market.
  4. Local: All adult Minnesotans will likely be eligible for COVID-19 vaccine by summer — Another wealthy Florida community receives special access to COVID-19 vaccine.
  5. Sports: Poll weighs impact of athlete vaccination.

The week markets went wild

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio

The markets just closed out a manic week.

Why it matters: Outsized — and in some cases historic — moves were evident across the board.