Russia ‘respects’ result of France’s election

Russia 'respects' result of France's election
Le Pen meets Putin in March 2017. Photo: AFP
The Kremlin on Monday said it respected the result of the first round of the French presidential election and hoped for better ties with Paris.
“We respect the choice of the French people. We are in favour of building good and mutually beneficial relations,” said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, quoted by state-run RIA Novosti news agency.
  
Pro-European centrist Emmanuel Macron and far-right leader Marine Le Pen claimed the most votes in the election Sunday to progress to a second round run-off on May 7.
   
Macron is clear favourite to become France's youngest president after topping Sunday's ballot with 23.75 percent of votes, slightly ahead of National Front (FN) leader Le Pen on 21.53 percent, according to final results.
   
Russia has been seen as a keen backer of Kremlin friendly Le Pen, who met President Vladimir Putin in a surprise visit to Moscow ahead of the vote.

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