Afghan Panel Sets Date for Postponed Elections; Next Round of Afghan Peace Talks Scheduled for Feb. 6 in Islamabad; Protests Erupt Over Student Suicide in Hyderabad

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The Afghan election commission announced on Monday that it set an Oct. 15 date for parliamentary and district council elections (NYT, Reuters). Parliament’s five-year term expired in June 2015, but elections were postponed and parliament’s term extended due to security fears and disagreements regarding how to ensure a fair election. A spokesman for Abdullah Abdullah, the unity government’s chief executive, denounced the plan as illegitimate because of a lack of electoral reform. “The current election commission has no legitimacy because it was their weak management of the previous election that brought us on the brink of chaos,” said Abdullah’s spokesman Javid Faisal. “Reforming the election process is a precondition to any election, and a part of the larger reform is the changing of current commission officials.”