POLITICS
02/15/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Senate Republicans: Did Panetta's Oversee Clinton-Era Extraordinary Rendition?

President-elect Barack Obama's choice for CIA director, Leon Panetta, served as White House chief of staff during the time the Clinton administration accelerated a practice of kidnapping terrorist suspects and sending them to countries with records of torturing prisoners, human rights organizations and former U.S. officials say.

Republicans on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence will question Mr. Panetta, chief of staff for President Clinton from 1994 to 1997, about what, if any, role he played in shaping the policy known as "extraordinary rendition," a Republican aide on the committee said. Mr. Panetta's confirmation hearing is scheduled for Jan. 27. The aide asked not to be named because of the sensitivity of the issue.

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