KNOW IT ALL: Wednesday's Top 7 Stories at NBC News

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Good morning. Here are some of the stories we're following today:

1. Only Female Death Row Inmate in Georgia Executed

Kelly Renee Gissendaner, 47, was put to death at 12:21 a.m. ET Wednesday after a flurry of last-minute appeals and a plea on behalf of Pope Francis failed. She was the first woman executed in Georgia in 70 years for the 1997 murder plot against her husband, and is one of a handful of death row inmates executed even though they did not physically partake in a murder. Read more in NEWS.

2. Kim Davis Secretly Met With Pope: Lawyers

Attorneys for the embattled Kentucky county clerk claimed Tuesday that she had a secret meeting with Pope Francis during his trip to America — and said he told her to "stay strong." Read more in NEWS.

3. Forecasters Warn Joaquin Could Become Hurricane

Tropical Storm Joaquin was lurking in the Atlantic Ocean on the verge of becoming a hurricane Wednesday — but meteorologists were still divided about whether it was likely to strike the U.S. East Coast. Read more in NEWS.

4. Planned Parenthood Chief Faces Off With GOP

The head of the organization was in the hot seat on Tuesday for the first time since the release of controversial videos that have renewed conservatives' calls to end the organization's federal funding. Some Republicans have vowed not to support a budget bill that supports giving money to Planned Parenthood. Read more in POLITICS.

5. U.S. Airstrikes Back Battle for Taliban-Seized City

The U.S. launched airstrikes overnight at Taliban targets and coalition special forces fought insurgents as fierce battles raged for control of Kunduz — the first Afghan city to fall to the militants in 14 years. Read more in NEWS.

6. Putin Gets Go-Ahead to Use Troops in Syria

Russian lawmakers voted unanimously Wednesday to let President Vladimir Putin send the nation's troops to Syria. The Kremlin sought to play down the decision, saying it will only use its air force there, not ground troops. Read more in NEWS.

7. Edward Snowden Joins Twitter With a Question

"Can you hear me now?" That's what the infamous NSA whistleblower asked after officially joining Twitter on Tuesday. Snowden, who remains in hiding in Russia, is following only one other Twitter account: the NSA's. Read more in TECH.

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