Speed Reads

Change of plans

Defense Secretary Hagel confirms plan to delay U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan

Speaking from Kabul, Afghanistan, in what is likely his final visit to the region as defense secretary, Chuck Hagel on Saturday confirmed that the United States will delay about 1,000 troops in withdrawing from Afghanistan, NBC News reports.

The U.S. plan had originally been to leave just 9,800 troops in the region by the beginning of 2015; now, Hagel says 10,800 will remain stationed there for at least the first few months of the new year.

"But the president's authorization will not change our troops' missions, or the long-term timeline for our drawdown," Hagel said.