The conservative French Finance Minister - Valery Giscard D'Estaing - has been elected as the new French President.
GV Parisian polling station
SV Election posters for Mitterrand and Giscard D'Estaing
SV INT People voting
SV Polling cards
SV Women placing vote in ballot box
CU Woman voting (2 shots)
SV PAN People behind curtains voting and leaving
GV Another polling station in suburbs
LV Posters for Mitterrand and Giscard D'Estaing
GV INT People collecting ballot papers
SCU Woman voting
GV People voting (2 shots)
SCU Acting President Alain Poher votes
SV Sign "Chateau Chinon"
GV Cars arriving at polling station
SV INT Mitterrand and wife casting votes (2 shots)
SV Mitterrand shakes hands with officials and votes and walks from room to applause
GV Giscard D'Estaing out of car and through crowd into polling station and voting (3 shots)
Initials BB/0130 NC/PN/BB/0207
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The conservative French Finance Minister - Valery Giscard D'Estaing - has been elected as the new French President.
As the votes were counted late on Sunday (19 May), M. Giscard E'Estaing emerged with a slim majority of 1.4 per cent.
The official vote count gave M. Giscard D'Estaing 50.7 per cent of the vote. Socialist Francois Mitterrand polled 49.3 per cent.
Nearly 31 million voters went to the polls on Sunday, in a record turnout. 800,000 of them voted in overseas territories. These votes were not expected to be fully counted until Monday (20 May). In France, the weather gave the advantage to M. Giscard D'Estaing. A warm, sunny day meant many of France's older women went out to vote, and their votes were mainly conservative.
With more than 26 million votes counted out of 27 million votes in France, M. Giscard D'Estaing polled 13,127,000 votes, and M. Mitterrand polled 12,760,000 votes.
SYNOPSIS: As the voting patterns became clearer, it was obvious that M. Mitterrand would be beaten, if narrowly, in his run for the Presidency, which became vacant in early April after the death of Georges Pompidou Backed by the Communist Party, M. Mitterrand had promised to nationalise some companies and turn france into a more socialist country.