France elections latest: Macron asks PM Attal to stay on as country faces ‘3 major risks’ over deadlock

French president Emmanuel Macron has refused the resignation of the country’s prime minister Gabriel Attal, asking him to stay on as the country faces weeks of political instability after a shock snap election result.

A left-wing alliance called New Popular Front won the most seats, with Mr Macron’s centrist grouping coming second. That pushed Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally (RN) into third, but with no party holding a majority. Le Pen’s party won the first round of the election late last month, but tactical voting – with more than 200 candidates, mostly from the left-wing alliance and the centrists, dropping out so as not to split the anti-RN vote.

Mr Attal had offered his resignation in the wake of the result, but Mr Macron has said he needs to stay on for now “to ensure the stability of the country” as the deal-making begins.

It comes as France's economic minister, Bruno Le Maire, faced three major risks over the political deadlock. He said the immediate risk was a "financial crisis and economic decline". The other two are an "ideological fracture of the nation” and a parliament full of “scattered” ideas from sides all with different agendas.

Key Points

  • Macron asks PM Attal to stay

  • Far right thwarted by shock win for left in French elections

  • National Rally supporters react to shock French election results: ‘Disappointed’

  • How world leaders reacted to the French elections

French newspaper runs front page of Bardella titled: ‘The slap'

Monday 8 July 2024 01:30 , Andy Gregory

Business newspaper Les Echos has run a front page showing a grim-faced Jordan Bardella with the headline “la claque” – which translates to “the slap”.

Bardella accuses Macron of ‘trying to paralyse our institutions'

Monday 8 July 2024 02:02 , Andy Gregory

Here is more from National Rally leader Jordan Bardella’s speech after his distant hopes of becoming prime minister became even more so with Sunday’s exit poll projections:

“I say tonight with gravity that depriving millions of French people of the possibility of seeing their ideas brought to power will never be a viable destiny for France.

“Tonight, by deliberately trying to paralyse our institutions, Emmanuel Macron has not simply pushed the country towards uncertainty and instability, he has deprived the French people of any response to their day-to-day difficulties for many months to come.

“In the midst of a purchasing power crisis, with insecurity and disorder hitting the country hard, France is deprived of a majority, of a government to act, and therefore of a clear course to turn France around.”

Watch: Celebrations in Paris as far-right projected to come third in exit poll

Monday 8 July 2024 02:31 , Andy Gregory

Hung parliament sees France heading into unknown territory

Monday 8 July 2024 02:59 , AP

A hung parliament is unknown territory for modern France.

Unlike other countries in Europe that are more accustomed to coalition governments, France doesn’t have a tradition of politicians from rival political camps coming together to form a majority. France is also more centralised than many other European countries, with many more decisions made in Paris.

The president was hoping that with France’s fate in their hands, voters might shift from the far right and left and return to mainstream parties closer to the centre – where Emmanuel Macron found much of the support that won him the presidency in 2017 and again in 2022.

But rather than rally behind him, millions of voters seized on his surprise decision as an opportunity to vent their anger.

Pollsters see leftist alliance first with up to 198 seats

Monday 8 July 2024 04:00 , Namita Singh

France faced potential political deadlock after elections yesterday threw up a hung parliament, with a leftist alliance unexpectedly taking the top spot but no group winning a majority.

Voters delivered a major setback for Marine Le Pen’s nationalist, eurosceptic National Rally (RN), which opinion polls had predicted would win the second-round ballot but ended up in the third spot, according to pollsters’ projections.

The results were also a blow for centrist president Emmanuel Macron, who called the snap election to clarify the political landscape after his ticket took a battering at the hands of the RN in European Parliament elections last month.

He ended up with a hugely fragmented parliament, in what is set to weaken France’s role in the European Union and elsewhere abroad and make it hard for anyone to push through a domestic agenda.

The election will leave parliament divided in three big groups - the left, centrists, and the far right - with hugely different platforms and no tradition at all of working together.

Poll promises of New Popular Front alliance

Monday 8 July 2024 04:30 , Namita Singh

The leftist New Popular Front (NFP) alliance, which wants to cap prices of essential goods like fuel and food, raise the minimum wage to a net €1,600 ($1,732) per month, hike wages for public sector workers and impose a wealth tax, immediately said it wanted to govern.

“The will of the people must be strictly respected ... the president must invite the New Popular Front to govern,” said hard-left leader Jean-Luc Melenchon.

The eurosceptic National Rally (RN) has worked under Marine Le Pen to shed a historic reputation for racism and antisemitism but many in French society still view its France-first stance and surging popularity with alarm.

People gather in front of Le Monument a la Republique statue during an election night rally following the first results of the second round of France’s legislative election at Republique Square in Paris on 7 July 2024 (AFP via Getty Images)
People gather in front of Le Monument a la Republique statue during an election night rally following the first results of the second round of France’s legislative election at Republique Square in Paris on 7 July 2024 (AFP via Getty Images)

There were hugs, screams of joy and tears of relief at the left’s gathering in Paris when the voting projections were announced.

Republique square in central Paris filled with crowds and a party atmosphere, with leftwing supporters playing drums, lighting flares, and chanting “We’ve won! We’ve won!”

I’m relieved. As a French-Moroccan, a doctor, an ecologist activist, what the far right was proposing to do as a government was craziness.

Hafsah Hachad, voter

The awkward leftist alliance, which the hard left, Greens and Socialists hastily put together before the vote, was far from having an absolute majority of 289 seats in the 577-seat assembly.

Official results were trickling in, with the results from most, if not all, constituencies likely in this morning.

Prime minister to resign today

Monday 8 July 2024 05:00 , Namita Singh

Prime minister Gabriel Attal said he would hand in his resignation today but would stay on in a care-taking capacity as long as needed.

It comes as polling agencies forecast the left would get 184-198 seats, Emmanuel Macron’s centrist alliance 160-169 and the RN and its allies 135-143.

The euro fell yesterday after the vote projections were announced.

“We should get a brief respite in the market ... because we’re not seeing an extremist RN majority take place, but it’s likely to lead to political gridlock at least until the autumn of 2025,” said Aneeka Gupta, macroeconomic research director at WisdomTree.

Prime minister expresses disapproval of Macron's decision to call snap election

Monday 8 July 2024 05:19 , Namita Singh

With the Paris Olympics looming, prime minister Gabriel Attal said he was ready to stay at his post “as long as duty demands”.

President Emmanuel Macron has three years remaining on his presidential term.

Mr Attal made clearer than ever his disapproval of Mr Macron’s shock decision to call the election, saying “I didn’t choose this dissolution” of the outgoing National Assembly, where the president’s centrist alliance used to be single biggest group, albeit without an absolute majority.

France’s prime minister Gabriel Attal gives a speech following the first results of the second round of France’s legislative election at Matignon in Paris on 7 July 202 (AFP via Getty Images)
France’s prime minister Gabriel Attal gives a speech following the first results of the second round of France’s legislative election at Matignon in Paris on 7 July 202 (AFP via Getty Images)

Still, it was able to govern for two years, pulling in lawmakers from other camps to fight off efforts to bring it down.

The new legislature appears shorn of such stability.

When Mr Macron flies to Washington for a summit this week of the Nato alliance, he will leave a country with no clear idea who may be its next prime minister and facing the prospect that the president may be obliged to share power with a politician deeply opposed to his policies.

What are the key challenges facing the leftist alliance?

Monday 8 July 2024 05:30 , Namita Singh

A key question is whether the leftist alliance will stay united and agree on what course to take.

Jean-Luc Melenchon, leader of the hard-left France Unbowed, ruled out a broad coalition of parties of different stripes.

Raphael Glucksmann, from the Socialist Party, urged his alliance partners to act like “grown-ups”.

“We’re ahead, but we’re in a divided parliament,” he said. “We’re going to have to talk, to discuss, to engage in dialogue.”

The constitution does not oblige Emmanuel Macron to ask the leftist group to form a government, though that would be the usual step as it is the biggest group in parliament.

Demonstrators clash with police during a protest following the legislative election results on 7 July 2024 in Paris, France (Getty Images)
Demonstrators clash with police during a protest following the legislative election results on 7 July 2024 in Paris, France (Getty Images)

In Mr Macron’s entourage, there was no indication of his next move.

“The question we’re going to have to ask ourselves tonight and in the coming days is: which coalition is capable of reaching the 289 seats to govern?” one person close to him told Reuters.

Some in his alliance, including former prime minister Edouard Philippe, envisaged a broad cross-party alliance but said it could not include the far-left France Unbowed.

Left supporters rejoice after poll predictions

Monday 8 July 2024 05:45 , Namita Singh

In Stalingrad Square, Paris, supporters on the left coalition cheered as projections showing the alliance in first place flashed on a giant screen. Cries of joy also rang out in Republique Plaza in eastern Paris, with people spontaneously hugging strangers and breaking into several minutes of nonstop applause after the projections landed.

People react after the second round of the French legislative elections results at Place de la Republique in Paris, France, 07 July 2024 (EPA)
People react after the second round of the French legislative elections results at Place de la Republique in Paris, France, 07 July 2024 (EPA)

Marielle Castry, a medical secretary, was on the Metro in Paris when the projected results were first announced.

“Everybody had their smartphones and were waiting for the results and then everybody was overjoyed,” said the 55-year-old. “I had been stressed out since 9 June and the European elections. And now, I feel good. Relieved.”

What does Le Pen’s loss mean for France’s allies?

Monday 8 July 2024 06:00 , Namita Singh

Many of France’s allies breathed a sigh of relief that the worst was averted as Marine Le Pen’s far-right failed to win a snap election yesterday but they noted that a messy coalition from a hung parliament could also pose headaches for Europe.

Ms Le Pen’s National Rally had been favourite to top the polls, raising the risk of France’s first far-right government since the second world war and threatening to upend economic and foreign policy in the euro zone’s second-largest economy.

Member of parliament for the French right-wing party National Rally (Rassemblement National, RN), Marine Le Pen addresses journalists at the party’s headquarters after preliminary results of the second round of the French parliamentary elections, in Paris, France, 07 July 2024 (EPA)
Member of parliament for the French right-wing party National Rally (Rassemblement National, RN), Marine Le Pen addresses journalists at the party’s headquarters after preliminary results of the second round of the French parliamentary elections, in Paris, France, 07 July 2024 (EPA)

In particular, Ukraine’s allies feared that Ms Le Pen-led government could be soft on Moscow and pare back military aid that Kyiv has relied on since the Russian invasion in 2022, though her party has latterly said Russia was a threat.

The National Rally’s defeat signals at least a temporary pushback against a far-right surge in Europe, but could herald a period of instability with a new government in an uneasy “cohabitation” with president Emmanuel Macron.

Clashes in France as poll predicts surprise win for left coalition

Monday 8 July 2024 06:15 , Namita Singh

Riots erupted in France after polls predicted a surprise win for the left.

Footage showed police in riots gear as they attempted to contain violent demonstrations in Paris and used tear gas to disperse the protesters.

Unlike other countries in Europe that are more accustomed to coalition governments, France doesn’t have a tradition of lawmakers from rival political camps coming together to form a majority. France is also more centralised than many other European countries, with many more decisions made in Paris.

French riot police run during clashes with demonstrators following partial results in the second round of the early French parliamentary elections, at the Place de la Republique in Paris, France, 7 July 2024 (Reuters)
French riot police run during clashes with demonstrators following partial results in the second round of the early French parliamentary elections, at the Place de la Republique in Paris, France, 7 July 2024 (Reuters)
A protester kicks back a tear gas canister as clashes occur on the sidelines of an election night following the second round results of France’s legislative election at Republique Square in Paris on the night of 8 July 2024 (AFP via Getty Images)
A protester kicks back a tear gas canister as clashes occur on the sidelines of an election night following the second round results of France’s legislative election at Republique Square in Paris on the night of 8 July 2024 (AFP via Getty Images)

The president was hoping that with France’s fate in their hands, voters might shift from the far-right and left and return to mainstream parties closer to the center — where Emmanuel Macron found much of the support that won him the presidency in 2017 and again in 2022.

But rather than rally behind him, millions of voters seized on his surprise decision as an opportunity to vent their anger about inflation, crime, immigration and other grievances — including Mr Macron’s style of government.

How have France’s allies responded to snap poll predictions?

Monday 8 July 2024 06:30 , Namita Singh

Emmanuel Macron had called the snap poll in an attempt to wrest the initiative back from Marine Le Pen but his own party was left trailing behind an alliance of leftist parties that performed far better than expected to take first place.

Several early reactions from overseas rejoiced that the immediate threat of a far-right government had been averted.

“In Paris enthusiasm, in Moscow disappointment, in Kyiv relief. Enough to be happy in Warsaw,” Polish prime minister Donald Tusk said on X.

“The worst has been avoided,” said Nils Schmid, the foreign policy spokesperson for chancellor Olaf Scholz’s Social Democrats in Germany, where the far-right has also surged in popularity during a cost of living crisis.

“The president is politically weakened, even if he retains a central role in view of the unclear majority situation. Forming a government will be complicated,” Mr Schmid told the Funke media group.

Spanish prime minister Pedro Sanchez’s party congratulated the leftist alliance, called the New Popular Front, for a victory that “stops the far-right from reaching the government”.

Nikos Androulakis, the head of Greece’s Socialist PASOK party, said the French people had “raised a wall against the far right, racism and intolerance and guarded the timeless principles of the French Republic: Liberty, Equality and Fraternity”.

Colombia’s leftist firebrand president, Gustavo Petro, also congratulated the French for keeping out Ms Le Pen.

“There are battles that last just a few days but (which) define humanity’s fate. France has gone through one of these,” he said.

An EU official, speaking on condition of anonymity, called it a “huge relief” but added: “what it means for Europe on a day to day basis remains to be seen though.”

France shifts to the left, but risks policy paralysis

Monday 8 July 2024 06:45 , Namita Singh

France faced a hung parliament and the prospect of taxing negotiations starting today to form a government, after a surprise left-wing surge blocked Marine Le Pen’s quest to bring the far-right to power.

The leftist New Popular Front (NFP) emerged as the dominant force in the National Assembly after Sunday’s election, but with no single group securing a working majority the possibilities include the NFP forming a minority government or the building of a broad, unwieldy coalition.

The result leaves the euro zone’s second-largest economy in limbo, heralding a period of political instability just weeks before Paris hosts the Olympic Games.

Emmanuel Macron ended up with a hugely fragmented parliament, in what is set to weaken France’s role in the European Union and further afield, and make it hard for anyone to push through a domestic agenda.

The left won 182 seats, Mr Macron’s centrist alliance 168 and Ms Le Pen’s National Rally (RN) and allies 143, interior ministry data cited by Le Monde newspaper showed.

“There’s really going to be a vacuum when it comes to France‘s legislative ability,” said Simon Harvey, head of FX analysis at Monex Europe in London.

Baptiste Fourasti, a 23-year-old designer in Place de la Republique, said, “we weren’t expecting it, neither were the polls. We are happy that the French people succeeded once more in blocking the far-right.”

However he was worried that far-right may grow in strength and win next time if the next government is not beyond reproach.

“It will be difficult with a hung parliament, but better than if it was the far-right (ahead),” he said.

‘Our victory has been merely delayed’

Monday 8 July 2024 07:00 , Namita Singh

Marine Le Pen, who will likely be the party’s candidate for the 2027 presidential election, said that Sunday’s ballot, in which the RN made major gains compared with previous elections, had sown the seeds for the future.

“Our victory has been merely delayed,” she said.

Member of Parliament for the French right-wing party National Rally (Rassemblement National, RN), Marine Le Pen at the party’s headquarters after preliminary results of the second round of the French parliamentary elections, in Paris, France, 07 July 2024 (EPA)
Member of Parliament for the French right-wing party National Rally (Rassemblement National, RN), Marine Le Pen at the party’s headquarters after preliminary results of the second round of the French parliamentary elections, in Paris, France, 07 July 2024 (EPA)

For Ms Le Pen’s National Rally (RN), the result was a far cry from weeks during which opinion polls consistently projected it would win comfortably.

The left and centrist alliances cooperated after the first round of voting last week by pulling scores of candidates from three-way races to build a unified anti-RN vote.

In his first reaction, RN leader Jordan Bardella, Ms Le Pen’s protege, called the cooperation between anti-RN forces a “disgraceful alliance” that he said would paralyse France.

Macron to wait for full results before announcing major decision

Monday 8 July 2024 07:15 , Namita Singh

In a brief statement, the Elysee, the French presidential palace said Emmanuel Macron is awaiting the full results of all 577 constituencies “before taking the necessary decisions.”

“In his role as guarantor of our institutions, the president will ensure that the sovereign choice of the French people is respected,” it said.

France’s president Emmanuel Macron exits a polling booth, adorned with curtains displaying the colors of the flag of France, to vote in the second round of France’s legislative election at a polling station in Le Touquet, northern France on 7 July 2024 (AFP via Getty)
France’s president Emmanuel Macron exits a polling booth, adorned with curtains displaying the colors of the flag of France, to vote in the second round of France’s legislative election at a polling station in Le Touquet, northern France on 7 July 2024 (AFP via Getty)

Who are the New Popular Front?

Monday 8 July 2024 07:30 , Namita Singh

About a month back, there was no New Popular Front, which is now set to preside over the most seats in the French parliament and is likely to give the new prime minister to the country.

The alliance was hastily assembled after president Emmanuel Macron called a surprise snap parliament election.

The NFP - made up of the Communist Party, the hard left France Unbowed, the Green party and the Socialist Party - has not said who would be its pick for prime minister.

People celebrate in Place de la Republique following the legislative election results on 7 July 2024 in Paris, France (Getty Images)
People celebrate in Place de la Republique following the legislative election results on 7 July 2024 in Paris, France (Getty Images)

Among the key figures who could likely emerge as the prime ministerial face of the alliance include Jean-Luc Melenchon.

The 72-year-old has been a fixture in French left-wing politics for decades and held ministerial posts in past governments, when he was a member of the Socialist Party.

He ran for president in 2012, 2017 and 2022, improving his score each time. He came third in 2022, just behind far-right leader Marine Le Pen. Macron won that election.

The other contenders include Marine Tonderlier, the leader of the Greens, Raphael Glucksmann of Socialist Party and Laurent Berger, a former head of one of France’s main trade unions, the moderate CFDT.

Here we have some of the latest photos France

Monday 8 July 2024 07:45 , Tom Watling

Below we have some of the latest photos coming out of France last night as the exit polls showed that Marine Le Pen’s far right National Rally had failed to capitalise on their electoral success during the first round of voting last month.

Left wing supporters light red flares as they celebrate during a rally after the announcement of the results of the second round of France's parliamentary elections in Lyon, eastern France (AFP via Getty Images)
Left wing supporters light red flares as they celebrate during a rally after the announcement of the results of the second round of France's parliamentary elections in Lyon, eastern France (AFP via Getty Images)
People gather at the Republique plaza in Paris after the second round of the legislative election on Sunday (AP)
People gather at the Republique plaza in Paris after the second round of the legislative election on Sunday (AP)
Thousands gathered at Republique Square in Paris for the election night results (AFP via Getty Images)
Thousands gathered at Republique Square in Paris for the election night results (AFP via Getty Images)

Far right thwarted by shock win for left in French elections

Monday 8 July 2024 08:15 , Tom Watling

Far right thwarted by shock win for left in French elections

Watch live view of French National Assembly as country faces political deadlock after election result

Monday 8 July 2024 08:45 , Tom Watling

Watch live view of French National Assembly as country faces political deadlock

Tear gas and riot police deployed against crowds gathering at Paris landmark after French election results

Monday 8 July 2024 09:15 , Tom Watling

Tear gas and riot police deployed against crowds gathering at Paris landmark

National Rally supporters react to shock French election results: ‘Disappointed’

Monday 8 July 2024 09:45 , Tom Watling

National Rally supporters react to shock French election results: ‘Disappointed’

How world leaders reacted to the French elections

Monday 8 July 2024 10:15 , Tom Watling

Several early reactions from overseas rejoiced that the immediate threat of a far-right government had been averted.

Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares told the radio station RNE he was happy to see a defeat for the far right, which he described as "completely contrary to European values".

Nikos Androulakis, the head of Greece’s Socialist PASOK party, said the French people had "raised a wall against the far right, racism and intolerance and guarded the timeless principles of the French Republic: Liberty, Equality and Fraternity."

Supportive messages came from leaders in Mexico and Venezuela, while Colombia’s leftist firebrand President, Gustavo Petro, also congratulated the French for keeping out Le Pen.

"There are battles that last just a few days but (which) define humanity’s fate. France has gone through one of these," he said.

An EU official called it a "huge relief" but added: "what it means for Europe on a day to day basis remains to be seen though."

France's far-right National Rally to join new EU alliance

Monday 8 July 2024 10:50 , Tom Watling

Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally (RN) will join a new alliance in the European Parliament led by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Hungary’s government spokesperson said on Monday.

Austria’s far-right Freedom Party (FPO), Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s Fidesz and the populist Czech ANO party led by Andrej Babis formed a new alliance in the European Parliament, citing the fight against illegal immigration, as well as transferring more powers from Brussels back to member states as the alliance’s goals.

Marine Le Pen addresses journalists at the party’s headquarters after preliminary results of the second round of the French parliamentary elections, in Paris (EPA)
Marine Le Pen addresses journalists at the party’s headquarters after preliminary results of the second round of the French parliamentary elections, in Paris (EPA)

Macron asks PM Attal to stay

Monday 8 July 2024 11:44 , Tom Watling

French president Emmanuel Macron has refused the resignation of the country’s prime minister, asking him on Monday to remain temporarily as the head of the government after chaotic election results left the government in limbo.

French voters split the legislature on the left, centre and far right, leaving no faction even close to the majority needed to form a government. The results from Sunday’s vote raised the risk of paralysis for the European Union’s second-largest economy.

Mr Macron gambled that his decision to call snap elections would give France a “moment of clarification”, but the outcome showed the opposite, less than three weeks before the start of the Paris Olympics, when the country will be under an international spotlight.

France’s main share index opened with a dip, but quickly recovered, possibly because markets had feared an outright victory for the far right or the leftist coalition.

Prime Minister Gabriel Attal had said he would remain in office if needed but offered his resignation Monday morning. Macron, who named him just seven months ago, immediately asked him to stay on "to ensure the stability of the country.” Mr Macron’s top political allies joined the meeting with Attal at the presidential palace.

French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal, left, and French President Emmanuel Macron (AP)
French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal, left, and French President Emmanuel Macron (AP)

France at risk of ‘immediate financial crisis’, says economy minister

Monday 8 July 2024 12:15 , Tom Watling

France is at risk of “immediate financial crisis” after the election result, the country’s outgoing economy minister has warned.

Bruno Le Maire celebrated the loss of the hard-right, but said there are risks ahead after president Emmanuel Macron’s party came second to the hard-left in a snap election.“The most immediate risk is a financial crisis and France’s economic decline,” he said.

Kremlin sees no strong political will in France for restoring ties

Monday 8 July 2024 12:45 , Tom Watling

The Kremlin said on Monday it saw no strong political will in France aimed at restoring Moscow’s relations with Paris but would follow the formation of France‘s new government with interest after elections there.

Marine Le Pen’s nationalist, eurosceptic National Rally (RN), which opponents have accused of being too soft on Russia, failed to win a snap election on Sunday as the polls had predicted, with a leftist alliance unexpectedly taking the top spot in a hung parliament.

“The victory of political forces that would be supporters of efforts to restore our bilateral relations is definitely better for Russia, but so far we do not see such bright political will in anyone, so we do not harbour any special hopes or illusions in this regard,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

“Secondly, it is obvious that a drift is taking place in the moods of French voters, a drift that is really unpredictable. But we will watch the formation of government, the formation of blocs...with great interest.

“France is a very important country on the European continent, so of course, everything that happens there is interesting for us.”

Moscow has long courted leaders on Europe’s political far right and is keen to exploit any signs of division in Europe that could weaken support for Ukraine.

Le Pen has in the past expressed her admiration of President Vladimir Putin.

Berlin expresses 'relief' in response to French election result

Monday 8 July 2024 13:15 , Tom Watling

A spokesperson for German Chancellor Olaf Scholz expressed “relief” in response to the left’s win against the far right in the French run-off election on Sunday.

“At first I think a certain relief prevails,” the spokesperson said on Monday, adding that it remained to be seen what government would be formed in Paris following the election.

The spokesperson said he was not aware of any direct contact between the chancellor and the winning left-wing parties, adding that President Emmanuel Macron remained Berlin’s point of contact.

‘Three major risks'

Monday 8 July 2024 13:19 , Chris Stevenson

France's economic minister has warned of "three major risks" facing the country amid the new political situation.

In a lengthy statement on X, Bruno Le Maire said the country remained "hostile to any discrimination and any distinction between citizens" and more than ever it was important to stay "united".

He said the most immediate risk was a "financial crisis and France's economic decline".

He also warned of an "ideological fracture of the nation" and that all concerns needed to be listened to.

He said the last risk was a "regime crisis".

"The forces of the National Assembly [French parliament] are scattered. Their ideas are even more so. We have a pressing need for consistency and lucidity," he added.

"More than ever, therefore, let us return to reality."

Mr Le Maire went on to say: "The place of France in the 21st century is now at stake. It is at this price. The price of reality."

The far right have been blocked from power in France – but the threat remains

Monday 8 July 2024 13:47 , Tom Watling

The far right have been blocked from power in France – but the threat remains

Hundreds celebrate in Paris as far-right loses sway in election day exit poll

Monday 8 July 2024 14:20 , Tom Watling

Hundreds celebrate in Paris as far-right loses sway in election day exit poll

Biden says France rejected extremism, Americans will too - MSNBC interview

Monday 8 July 2024 15:36 , Tom Watling

US President Joe Biden said on Monday that France had rejected extremism with a left-wing surge in its election and Americans would also reject it when they vote in November.

“France rejected extremism. Democrats will reject it here as well,” Mr Biden told MSNBC in a telephone interview.

Joe Biden applauded France for ‘rejecting extremism’ (AP)
Joe Biden applauded France for ‘rejecting extremism’ (AP)

Macron asks Attal to stay as PM for now as France faces hung parliament

Monday 8 July 2024 16:10 , Tom Watling

Macron asks Attal to stay as PM for now as France faces hung parliament

France voted against the far right – but what could happen next?

Monday 8 July 2024 17:34 , Tara Cobham

For France’s latest left-wing coalition it was mission accomplished – stopping Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally party from taking power in the second and final round of voting of this parliamentary election.

To a lesser extent, president Emmanuel Macron will likely also say he was vindicated in calling a snap election in the wake of the large gains made by Le Pen’s party in European elections in June. Le Pen has been dealt a blow. An agreement between the leftist bloc, called the New Popular Front, and Macron’s centrist Together grouping meant more than 200 candidates dropped out before the second round to prevent the vote against RN being split.

It worked. Having been offered a choice between the far right being the largest party in parliament or not, which is what a strong RN showing in the first round had suggested, voters rejected Le Pen. The young leader of the RN, Le Pen protégé Jordan Bardella had been seen as a prime minister-in-waiting, likely brought in alongside president Macron if RN took a grip on parliament.

International Editor Chris Stevenson writes:

France voted against the far right – but what could happen next?

No 10 says Starmer is prepared to work with any French leadership

Monday 8 July 2024 18:00 , Tara Cobham

In London, a government spokesperson said that Prime Minister Keir Starmer was prepared to work with the French leadership regardless of political affiliation.

"France is obviously one of the UK's closest partners - as Nato and G7 members we have many shared interests," a spokesperson said. "The prime minister has said previously he will work with any government in Europe and across the world."

Fears of increased violence on streets of France escalate

Monday 8 July 2024 19:00 , Tara Cobham

Fears of increased violence on the streets of France escalated today as the country's parliamentary system was thrown into chaos.

Law and order officials on Monday said they would continue to deploy thousands of extra police following rioting on Sunday night.

A sense of panic was increased as French President Emmanuel Macron pleaded with his own prime minister Gabriel Attal to stay on “to ensure stability”.

There was particular concern that France was exposing itself to serious security concerns in the run-up to the Paris Olympics, which start at the end of this month.

“The situation is extremely volatile, and extra officers will continue to be deployed to maintain order,” said an Interior Ministry source.

And a senior Paris police source said: “There were 30,000 officers on duty on Sunday night alone, and those kinds of figures will be maintained, especially as the Olympics approach.” Masked protesters were seen on the streets in cities such as Paris and Lyon on Sunday night, as police used baton charges and tear gas to try and repel them.

‘France rejected extremism’: Biden gives take on elections

Monday 8 July 2024 20:00 , Tara Cobham

US President Joe Biden provided his political analysis of the French elections when asked for his take on the outcome during an interview on Monday.

"The polls were wrong in France," he said, adding that "there's no right wave or tide here in America, either".

"France rejected extremism," Mr Biden said.

US President Joe Biden provided his political analysis of the French elections (REUTERS)
US President Joe Biden provided his political analysis of the French elections (REUTERS)

White House sees no post-election changes to France relationship

Monday 8 July 2024 21:00 , Tara Cobham

The White House said on Monday that the election results in France are not going to change the strong US relationship with France.

A leftist alliance unexpectedly took the top spot in French elections on Sunday, delivering a major setback for Marine Le Pen's nationalist National Rally (RN).

French footballer tells of ‘relief’ in Euro 2024 camp at election result

Monday 8 July 2024 22:00 , Tara Cobham

Midfielder Adrien Rabiot has admitted there was “relief” within the France camp at Euro 2024 when Sunday’s election results were announced back at home.

Some of Rabiot’s team-mates, among them captain Kylian Mbappe, last month urged voters to reject the far right in the nation’s parliamentary elections and although their calls appeared to go unheeded in the first ballot, they got their wish in Sunday’s second round as a leftist coalition prevailed.

Asked for the squad’s reaction during a press conference on Monday afternoon ahead of Tuesday’s semi-final clash with Spain in Munich, Rabiot said: “We didn’t watch together, no, because we got back from our training session, we had dinner at 8.15pm and then everyone went back to their rooms.

Read more here:

06:39 , Namita Singh

Welcome to The Independent liveblog on the French election results for Tuesday 9 July, as we provide the latest updates on the poll outcome in Europe’s second largest economy.

White House sees no post-election changes to France relationship

06:47 , Namita Singh

The White House yesterday said that the election results in France are not going to change the strong US relationship with France.

A leftist alliance unexpectedly took the top spot in French elections on Sunday, delivering a major setback for Marine Le Pen’s nationalist National Rally.

Euro slips as France faces hung parliament

06:52 , Namita Singh

The euro slipped yesterday but rose from overnight lows against the dollar after France’s election delivered a hung parliament.

The US dollar crept up from a more than three-week low after US payrolls data on Friday boosted bets that the Federal Reserve will soon start cutting interest rates.

French president Emmanuel Macron yesterday asked his prime minister to stay in the role for now, pending what will be difficult negotiations to form a new government after a surprise left-wing surge in elections.

People react to the projection of results during the second round of the legislative elections, near Republique Plaza in Paris, France, Sunday, 7 July 2024 (AP)
People react to the projection of results during the second round of the legislative elections, near Republique Plaza in Paris, France, Sunday, 7 July 2024 (AP)

“We’re still waiting to see if the coalition can get the 240 to 250 lawmakers together to have any semblance of a, what is it, I think in France, a working government. We’re in wait-and-see mode there,” said Garth Appelt, head of Foreign Exchange & Emerging Markets Derivatives, Mizuho Americas in New York.

“There was a small risk that France would actually start to move towards exiting the Eurozone” if the National Rally had won, Mr Given said. “People are just happy to have it off the table.”

Macron keeps France’s prime minister in place for ‘stability of country’

07:09 , Namita Singh

French president Emmanuel Macron has refused to accept the resignation of the country’s prime minister, asking him to remain temporarily as the head of the government after chaotic election results left the government in limbo.

Voters split the legislature on the left, centre and far right, leaving no faction even close to the majority needed to form a government.

The results from Sunday’s vote raised the risk of political paralysis for the European Union’s second-largest economy.

France’s prime minister Gabriel Attal prepares to deliver a speech following the first results of the second round of France’s legislative election at Hotel Matignon in Paris on 7 July 2024 (AFP via Getty Images)
France’s prime minister Gabriel Attal prepares to deliver a speech following the first results of the second round of France’s legislative election at Hotel Matignon in Paris on 7 July 2024 (AFP via Getty Images)

Mr Macron had gambled on his decision to call snap elections giving France a “moment of clarification”, but the outcome showed the opposite, less than three weeks before the start of the Paris Olympics.

Prime minister Gabriel Attal had said he would remain in office if needed, but offered his resignation on Monday morning.

Mr Macron, who appointed him just seven months ago, immediately asked Mr Attal to stay on “to ensure the stability of the country”.The day before, Mr Attal made clear that he disagreed with Mr Macron’s decision to call the surprise elections.

Far-right group from France and Hungary to lead a new political force in the European Parliament

07:27 , Namita Singh

Far-right parties from 12 countries, including France’s National Rally and Hungary’s ruling Fidesz, yesterday announced that they have joined together to form a new bloc in the European Parliament and plan to become a major political force.

The European Parliament moved perceptibly to the right following Europe-wide elections a month ago as many voters abandoned the business-friendly liberals and environmentalist Greens. Mainstream centre-right and centre-left groups still hold the majority though.

The new bloc, dubbed Patriots for Europe, is made up of 84 EU lawmakers and will be led by Jordan Bardella, the 28-year-old protégé of Marine Le Pen. Kinga Gál, from Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party, will be first vice president.

Report:

Far-right groups from France and Hungary to lead a new political force in the European Parliament

Analysis: France voted against the far right – but what could happen next?

07:30 , Namita Singh

France does not have a reputation for coalitions in recent times, writes our international editor Chris Stevenson, so be prepared for weeks of negotiations.

France voted against the far right – but what could happen next?

France's far right seemed a dead cert. Here’s why it didn’t win

07:53 , Namita Singh

So close, and yet – in the end – still so far away.

French far-right leader Marine Le Pen looked to be nearer to power than ever last week after her National Rally party, strengthened by new allies, triumphed in the opening round of legislative elections.

Its first place wasn’t a hole-in-one, but looked like an impressive position to possibly win or get close to an absolute parliamentary majority in the decisive runoff.

Report:

The far right seemed to have a lock on France's legislative elections. Here's why it didn't it win

Shock French left election win is little solace for nervous investors

08:23 , Namita Singh

A shock election win for France’s leftist alliance has reinforced wariness among investors who had already braced for the risk of political deadlock and a policy paralysis that’s unlikely to improve the country’s creaking public finances.

The left-wing New Popular Front (NFP) alliance won the most seats in Sunday’s election, but fell far short of an absolute majority, a big surprise after Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally (RN) led opinion polls.

France, at the centre of the euro project and the bloc’s second biggest economy, still faces a hung parliament and taxing negotiations to form a government as markets had already anticipated - just with the left in pole position, rather than the far-right.

08:30 , Namita Singh

Good afternoon. We will be pausing the live updates on the blog. Please visit our website The Independent for the latest news and current affairs.