Congo Political Deal Possible

Congo Political Deal Possible

KINSHASA, Congo (AP) -- Negotiators say they're optimistic that an agreement can be reached to end Congo's political impasse, though any deal must be officially endorsed by all parties at a plenary session Friday.

A working document calls for elections to be held in 2017 instead of 2018, and it would mean President Joseph Kabila could not seek a third term.

The development comes after several days of violent protests that Human Rights Watch says have left at least 34 dead.

Opposition leader Felix Tshisekedi says that while a deal has not been finalized, things are progressing well.

Kabila's mandate expired Monday, though a court has ruled he can stay in office until new elections can be held. The November vote was postponed indefinitely earlier this year, prompting fears he would not leave.

(KA)