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Afghan Parliamentary Commission Approves New Election Laws

Women read mock ballots produced as part of a voter-education campaign ahead of the presidential and provincial elections in 2009.
Afghan legislators have approved a law to govern next year's presidential and provincial council elections.

The July 15 vote by a parliamentary commission was a key step toward conducting the polls.

The law still needs to be signed by President Hamid Karzai, who is not allowed by law to seek reelection when his second five-year term ends next year.

Another law regulating the responsibilities of election officials was passed in recent days.

Karzai also must sign that legislation.

If endorsed by Karzai, the two laws would clear the way for the elections next year on April 5.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AP, and AFP