49Mln voter turnout expected in first round of French presidential elections
Al Mayadeen's correspondent in Paris has reported that the turnout in the first hours of the presidential elections is low.
The first round of presidential elections in France opened on Sunday at 09:00 local time [06:00 GMT] and will close at 19:00, with polling stations open until 20:00 in major cities such as Paris, Lyon, Nice, Toulouse, Bordeaux, and others, with an expected turnout of 49 million people.
Al Mayadeen's correspondent in Paris reported that the turnout in the first hours of the presidential elections is low.
The second round of the election is scheduled for April 24.
In addition to the incumbent, Emmanuel Macron, and right-wing National Rally party leader Marine Le Pen, the list of presidential candidates includes Republican candidate Valerie Pecresse, Eric Zemmour of the far-right Reconquete party, far-left politician Jean-Luc Melenchon, Communist Party leader Fabien Roussel, and Nicolas Dupont-Aignan of the right-wing France Arise party.
Click here: Meet the candidates for the 2022 French presidential elections
According to an Elabe poll conducted on Thursday and Friday among 1,801 adults, Macron might receive 26% of the vote, while Le Pen receives 25%. They are followed by far-left politician Jean-Luc Melenchon and far-right candidate Eric Zemmour, who are expected to receive 17.5% and 8.5% of the vote, respectively. Valerie Pecresse, the Republican candidate, has 8% of the vote. Macron is expected to win the run-off with 51% of the vote against Le Pen's 49%.
Meanwhile, the latest Ipsos poll, held from Wednesday to Friday, including over 1,500 adult respondents, gives Macron 26.5% of the vote, and 23% goes to Le Pen. Melenchon is the third with 16.5%. Zemmour and Pecresse are behind with 9% and 8.5%.
Moreover, France on Sunday votes in the first round of presidential elections projected to produce a run-off rematch between current President Emmanuel Macron and far-right leader Marine Le Pen that will be far tighter than their duel five years ago.
Polls opened in mainland France at 06:00 GMT after an unusual campaign overshadowed by the conflict in Ukraine that analysts warn could lead to unpredictable outcomes with turnout a major factor.
French overseas territories already voted Saturday to take account of the time difference.