Feb 27, 2013, 08.36 PM IST | Source: Reuters

Hagel swears in as US defense chief after bruising confirmation battle

USA-PENTATON-HAGEL:Hagel swears in as US defense chief after bruising confirmation battle

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Chuck Hagel, a decorated Vietnam veteran, swore in as the U.S. defense secretary at a small, closed-door ceremony on Wednesday, after a bruising confirmation battle in the Senate.

Hagel will address Pentagon employees at 10:30 a.m. EST. He was confirmed by the Senate on Tuesday in the closest vote ever for a defense secretary, with just four Republicans voting for him. (Reporting by Phil Stewart)

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