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Chuck Hagel resigns as US defense secretary; first major change to Obama’s Cabinet

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Washington (Nov. 24, 2014): U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel resigned on Monday, the first major change to President Barack Obama's Cabinet since his Democrats were routed in midterm elections three weeks ago.

Obama announced the resignation at a White House event with Hagel at his side.

Hagel was appointed less than two years ago as Obama pushed his signature program of winding up wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, a process that is being upended this year with U.S. re-engagement in Iraq and greater military cooperation with Kabul.

Hagel will remain in the Pentagon's top post until a successor is named, the official said.