12:56 GMT24 October 2020
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    French former Prime Minister Manuel Valls and ex-minister of education Benoit Hamon have entered second round of the Socialist Party primaries to determine a presidential nominee, the High Authority for the French Left Primary said Sunday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The first round of the French Socialist Party primaries to determine the presidential nominee finished on earlier Sunday.

    "According to the results obtained from 3,090 polling stations, Benoit Hamon receives 35.21% of votes, Manuel Valls gets 31.56%, Arnaud Montebourg gains support of 18.70% voters," the High Authority said.

    The polling stations closed at 19:00 local time (18:00 GMT). The turnout at the primaries was rather low, with some 1.7-1.9 million people casting their ballots.

    Seven candidates, namely former Prime Minister Manuel Valls, two ex-ministers of education Benoit Hamon and Vincent Peillon, former Minister of Economy Arnaud Montebourg, Sylvia Pinel from the Radical Party of the Left, leader of the Democratic Movement Jean-Luc Bennahmias and Francois de Rugy from the Ecologist Party, participated in the primaries.

    The two top candidates will participate in the second round of primaries set for January 29.

    The PS candidate will have to face French far-right National Front leader Le Pen, center-right The Republicans’ nominee Francois Fillon and independent candidate from the left Emmanuel Macron as his or her most important competitors.

    The first round of the French presidential elections will take place on April 23.


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