"I am solemnly urging to vote for Emmanuel Macron in the second round to beat the FN, to counter the deadly program [of Marine Le Pen] making France regress and dividing the French," Cazeneuve said, as quoted in Le Monde newspaper, as the fist estimates of the results showed that Le Pen and Macron both were very likely to make it to the second round.
Exit polls conducted by a Belgian broadcaster have showed earlier in the day that Le Pen and Macron run neck-and-neck with the latest showing that the independent candidate may get some 26 percent of votes, white 23 percent of French citizens support the National Front leader.
At 7 p.m. local time (17:00 GMT) the voting ended as the polling stations across France closed. Extension until 18:00 GMT is possible in some big cities. French media were prohibited by the law from publishing any preliminary results until the last polling stations were closed.
The French residents chose from 11 candidates in the first round, but only two of them will make it to the second round on May 7, which will be held if nobody gets support of more than half of voters.