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Navy Admiral Confirmed as New US Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff

The U.S. Senate has confirmed U.S. Navy Admiral Michael Mullen as the new chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Admiral Mullen, who currently serves as chief of naval operations, was confirmed Friday to replace Marine General Peter Pace as the nation's top military officer. Defense Secretary Robert Gates announced in June that the administration decided not to renominate General Pace in order to avoid a potential confrontation with Democratic senators over the war in Iraq.

During his confirmation hearing earlier this week, Admiral Mullen told the Senate Armed Services Committee the deployment of additional U.S. troops to Iraq has made the security situation better, but "not great," and that political reconciliation was the only solution.

Admiral Mullen also expressed concerns over Iran's "increasingly hostile" role in the Middle East.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.