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France braces for legislative elections

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Paris, June 11 (Ajit Weekly News) France has entered the final phase of preparations for its legislative elections in which voters will elect the National Assembly’s 577 members.

The first election round is scheduled for Sunday and the second for June 19, reports Xinhua news agency.

Each deputy is elected in a constituency, of which Metropolitan France (the area of the country that is geographically in Europe) has 539 and the overseas territories 27.

A further 11 deputies will represent the French nationals living abroad.

The deputies are directly elected for a term of five years.

For this year’s election, the French Interior Ministry has published a list of 6,293 candidates, which the local news channel BFMTV said was 20 per cent less than in 2017.

At 8 a.m. on Sunday, polling booths will open in Metropolitan France for registered voters.

If a candidate scores an absolute majority in the first round, more than 50 per cent of the vote as well as a turnout rate of no lower than 25 per cent, he or she is elected without the need for a second round.

Those candidates who win the support of at least 12.5 per cent of registered voters in the first round can advance to the second round on June 19.

The elections will be fought between President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist alliance Ensemble, a recently formed left-wing alliance dubbed NUPES (la Nouvelle Union Populaire Ecologique et Sociale) and led by Jean-Luc Melenchon, who finished in third place in this April’s presidential elections, the right-wing party Les Republicains, as well as the far-right parties Rassemblement National and “Reconquete”, led by former presidential candidates Marine Le Pen and Eric Zemmour, respectively.

According to the Interior Ministry, 20 political parties will compete for seats in the National Assembly.

The winner needs 289 seats to obtain an absolute majority.

Polling booths will be open from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. on both election days. In major cities, such as Paris, Lyon or Marseille, they will close at 8 p.m.

Online voting will be available for French citizens living abroad.

The preliminary election results are scheduled to be announced after 8 p.m.

The Interior Ministry will communicate the official results.

–Ajit Weekly News


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