Congo vote delayed until 2019, electoral commission says

Congo's electoral commission says the long-delayed presidential vote cannot take place until 2019, defying an agreement that it would take place this year.

The opposition calls the move a power grab, accusing President Joseph Kabila of seeking to extend his rule.

Kabila's mandate ended in December, but a court has ruled that he can stay in office until the next election. The delay has been met with protests.

Electoral commission president Corneille Nangaa on Wednesday cited deadly violence in central Congo for the latest delay. He says voter registration there is expected to last until January, and officials would need 504 days after that to prepare for the vote.

A deal with the opposition, brokered by the Catholic church, had called for aan election before the end of 2017.