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Ukraine Calls Local Elections, But Not In Crimea, Rebel-Held East

Ukrainian lawmakers have voted to call local elections on October 25.

But the bill passed on July 17 by the Verkhovna Rada said the elections would not be held in the Crimean Peninsula, which Russia annexed in March 2014, or in rebel-held eastern districts.

The Kyiv government has had no control over parts of the eastern Donetsk and Luhansk regions since fighting between government forces and Russia-backed separatist rebels erupted there in April 2014. The conflict has since claimed more than 6,500 lives.

The rebels in Donetsk and Luhansk have said they would organize their own local elections in the areas they control this fall.

Based on reporting by AP, TASS, and Interfax