KABUL: Afghanistan's presidential election will be delayed until July 20, an official said Sunday, three months later than the ballot had been scheduled to be held.
The announcement by the Independent Election Commission (IEC) comes after weeks of speculation that the vote would be postponed to create space for US-led efforts to end the 17-year war with the Taliban.
Provincial and district council elections, as well as a previously postponed parliamentary vote in Ghazni province, will be held on the same day, IEC chief Abdul Badi Sayyad told reporters.
The presidential ballot was originally scheduled for April 20, which many observers had considered unrealistic given the IEC was still finalising results of October's shambolic parliamentary elections.
A spokesman for President Ashraf Ghani, who plans to seek re-election, welcomed the new timeline.