Kent Covington
Associated Press/Photo by Jose Luis Magana

U.S. intelligence chiefs outline global threats

by Kent Covington
Posted 1/30/19, 10:26 am

Top U.S. intelligence officials briefed a Senate committee Tuesday about threats to the country’s security, the biggest of which comes from China. FBI Director Christopher Wray told the Senate Intelligence Committee that his agency has open investigations into economic espionage in virtually every one of its 56 field offices. The number of those cases has doubled in recent years, and most of them lead back to China, he said.

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Associated Press/Photo by Fernando Llano

U.S. cuts financial ties with Venezuela’s Maduro

by Kent Covington
Posted 1/29/19, 11:27 am

The United States on Tuesday gave self-declared interim President Juan Guaidó control of the Venezuelan government’s accounts in U.S.-insured banks, turning up the pressure on embattled President Nicolás Maduro to step down. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and national security adviser John Bolton on Monday announced sanctions against the state-run oil company, Petróleos de Venezuela. The sanctions will block Maduro’s access to $7 billion in assets and could lead to $11 billion dollars in lost exports over the next year, Bolton said.

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Associated Press/Afghan Presidential Palace

U.S. reports progress in Taliban talks

by Kent Covington
Posted 1/29/19, 10:40 am

Negotiators for the United States and the Taliban have reached “agreements in principle” for a peace deal that could end 17 years of war in Afghanistan, U.S. envoy Zalmay Khalilzad said. He announced the draft agreement Monday following six days of talks last week with the Taliban in Qatar. U.S. conditions for a peace deal included Taliban guarantees that Afghan territory would not be used as a “platform for international terrorist groups or individuals.”

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