URGENT ¥¥¥ US Defense Secretary Hagel in Kabul on surprise visit

New US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel landed in Afghanistan on Friday on an unannounced visit nine days after he was sworn into office, vowing to ensure a successful withdrawal of international troops.

"We have a lot of big issues and challenges ahead as we prepare for a responsible transition," he told reporters on his plane before landing on Friday evening in the Afghan capital.