French President Emmanuel Macron comfortably defeated far-right rival Marine Le Pen on Sunday to get a second term in office.
With 97% of votes counted, Macron was on course for a solid 57.4% of the vote, interior ministry figures showed, as per Reuters. Le Pen, the candidate of the far-right National Rally party Rassemblement National received 41.4% of the votes, the highest in her three unsuccessful presidential bids.
In his victory speech, Macron acknowledged that many had only voted for him only to keep Le Pen out and he promised to address the sense of many French that their living standards are slipping.
Macron is the first French president to win a second term in 20 years, but Le Pen’s result also marks the closest the far right has ever come to taking power in France and has revealed a deeply divided nation.
Final figures from Sunday’s vote are due on Monday.
“Bravo Emmanuel,” European Council President Charles Michel, wrote on Twitter. “In this turbulent period, we need a solid Europe and a France totally committed to a more sovereign and more strategic European Union.”