JERUSALEM - President Donald Trump abruptly declared Thursday the U.S. will recognize Israel's sovereignty over the disputed Golan Heights, a major shift in American policy that gives Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a political boost a month before what is expected to be a close election. The administration has been considering recognizing Israel's sovereignty over the strategic highlands, which Israel captured from Syria in 1967, for some time and Netanyahu had pressed the matter with visiting Secretary of State Mike Pompeo just a day earlier. U.S. and Israeli officials said Wednesday they had not expected a decision until next week, when Netanyahu is to visit the U.S. But in a tweet that appeared to catch many by surprise, Trump said the time had come for the United States to take the step, which Netanyahu warmly welcomed as a "miracle" on the Jewish holiday of Purim. "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!"