Published: Sat, May 20, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Iran's Rouhani congratulates France Macron on presidential victory

Iran's Rouhani congratulates France Macron on presidential victory

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said yesterday that millions of Europeans were counting on the success of incoming French president Emmanuel Macron.

Macron won 66.1 per cent of all votes on Sunday, while far-right opponent Marine Le Pen attracted 33.9 per cent of the votes.

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Le Pen, whom the chief rabbi of France and the CRIF umbrella of Jewish communities have decried as risky to democracy and minorities, received 34.2 percent of the vote compared to the 65.8 percent for the centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron, according to a report by Le Monde based on exit polls from Sunday's final round of the elections.

Reflecting on Macron's victory over far-right leader Marine Le Pen in the presidential runoff on Sunday, Valls said it was a blow to populism in Europe that gave a "terrific" image of France overseas.

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Macron was an investment banker at Rothschild from 2008 to 2012.

Macron has said he was aiming to secure an absolute majority in the lower chamber through the June 11 and 18 elections.

Trump tweeted congratulations to Macron Sunday, adding that he looks forward to working with him.

"Happy that the French chose a European future", European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker said on Twitter.

Mr. Trump had previously expressed support for Ms Le Pen because she was "strongest on borders, and she's the strongest on what's been going on in France".

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"I am happy with the result of Emmanuel Macron being elected president, which constitutes a veritable relief for all our nation and for the Jewish community of France", Joel Mergui, the president of the Consistoire, wrote Sunday evening in a statement by his group, which is responsible for providing religious services to Jews. "The growth in threats of terrorism and militant extremism is accompanied by an escalation of local conflicts and the destabilization of whole regions", Putin said in a congratulatory telegram released by the Kremlin.

Since the first round of the election, Macron has accused Russia of meddling in his campaign with cyberattacks and has refused to accredit Russian media outlets RT and Sputnik, accusing them of issuing fake news stories.

Clinton seemingly saw similarities between Macron's email hack and that of her campaign chair John Podesta, which she said was Russian interference in the election.

Le Pen, who met with Putin in Moscow in March, has called for the lifting of European Union sanctions against Russian Federation, imposed over its illegal annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.

French ex-Premier Manuel Valls suggested Tuesday that he wants to abandon France's Socialist party and run in June parliamentary elections under the banner of the president-elect's centrist political movement.

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