French left-wing alliance wins big in unexpected snap election result


A left-wing coalition that came together ahead of France’s snap elections has won the most parliamentary seats in the vote, beating the far-right National Rally into third place, according to exit polls. President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist alliance came in second place.

France was on course for a hung parliament in Sunday’s election after the leftist New Popular Front (NFP) alliance came out on top.

If confirmed, the NFP would become the largest grouping in the National Assembly with between 172 and 215 seats in the 577-seat chamber, according to projections based on early results.

Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally (RN), beaten into third place, is predicted to win between 115 to 155 seats – a major upset that looks set to bar the party from running the next government, as it had hoped.

President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist alliance Ensemble (Together), was projected to be narrowly second and win 150-180 seats.

Prime Minister Gabriel Attal said he would offer Macron his resignation on Monday but was ready to serve “as long as duty demands”, notably in light of the imminent Paris Olympics.

Cries of joy and tears of relief broke out at the leftist alliance’s gathering in Paris when the estimates were announced.

Jean-Luc Mélénchon, leader of the NFP’s main component – the hard-left France Unbowed – demanded that the left be allowed to form a government.

Turnout in the snap polls was close to 60 percent – the highest since 1981.

(With newswires)

Read more on RFI English

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