U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel arrived in Baghdad on Tuesday to consult with Iraqi government officials and confer with U.S. commanders about the campaign to defeat ISIS fighters. Hagel, on what is expected to be his last overseas trip as Pentagon chief, landed at the Baghdad International Airport under tight security. He is the first U.S. defense secretary to visit Iraq since Leon Panetta was there in December 2011 to mark the end of the U.S. military mission. Hagel said Monday during a visit to Kuwait that he believes Iraq’s security forces have gained a new momentum, thanks in part to sustained U.S. airstrikes against ISIS militants.
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