Venezuela’s President In China, Signs Agreements

The review panel, in a statement released through the DNI’s press office, confirmed to the AP that Clapper had exempted it from the U.S. Federal Advisory Committee Act, which requires such committees to conduct open meetings and notify the public about their activities. It said Clapper made the decision because of the ‘‘highly classified nature of their review,’’ but added: ‘‘We are conducting this review as openly and transparently as possible.’’ In private meetings so far, several attendees said their discussions did not mention any classified activities and that the panel members steered them away from doing so. Four of the five review panel members previously worked for Democratic administrations: Peter Swire, former Office of Management and Budget privacy director under President Bill Clinton; Michael Morell, Obama’s former deputy CIA director; Richard Clarke, former counterterrorism coordinator under Clinton and later for President George W.

General elections in Germany are scheduled for Sept. 22, 2013. Angela Merkel will run for her third term. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber) By GEIR MOULSON / Associated Press /  September 22, 2013 Buy reprints BERLIN (AP) — Chancellor Angela Merkel was strongly favored to win a third term at the helm of Europe’s biggest economy as Germans voted in a national election Sunday, but the popular conservative’s hopes of governing with center-right allies for another four years were in the balance. Nearly 62 million people were eligible to elect the lower house of Parliament, which in turn chooses the chancellor.

Typhoon veers from Hong Kong, hits southern China
The Associated Press Tourists from mainland China brave strong wind near the waterfront in Hong Kong Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013.The year’s most powerful typhoon had Hong Kong in its crosshairs on Sunday after sweeping past the Philippines and Taiwan and pummeling island communities with heavy rains and fierce winds. Typhoon Usagi was grinding westward and expected to make landfall close to Hong Kong late Sunday or early Monday. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)
By KELVIN CHAN / Associated Press / 
September 22, 2013

President Nicolas Maduro told his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, that the main goal of his trip was to further consolidate and expand the strategic partnership between the two countries that late President Hugo Chavez began with Chinese leaders. Chavez died in March after 14 years in power. The two leaders signed 12 agreements Sunday, including ones related to a finance fund deal, education, and a joint development between Chinese state-owned oil producer Sinopec and Venezuela’s national oil company. They also signed a cooperation and exchange agreement between China’s space flight administration and Venezuela’s science and innovation ministry relating to remote satellites. No details were given on any of the agreements.

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