Ghana’s former president John Mahama has congratulated Centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron on his decisive victory in the French presidential election.
Mr Macron defeated far-right candidate Marine Le Pen by about 65.5% to 34.5% to become, at 39, the country’s youngest president, the results show.
Mahama took to microblogging platform Twitter to salute Macron:
Mr Macron will also become the first president from outside the two traditional main parties since the modern republic’s foundation in 1958.
He said that a new page was being turned in French history.
“I want it to be a page of hope and trust,” he said.
Mr Macron said he had heard “the rage, anxiety and doubt that a lot of you have expressed” and vowed to spend his five years in office “fighting the forces of division that undermine France”.
He said he would “guarantee the unity of the nation and… defend and protect Europe.”
Mr Macron’s supporters gathered to celebrate outside the Louvre in central Paris. Mr Macron is on his way there now.
The Macron team said that the new president had had a “cordial” telephone conversation with Ms Le Pen.
In a speech she thanked the 11 million people who had voted for her. She said the election had shown a division between “patriots and globalists” and called for the emergence of a new political force.
Ms Le Pen said her National Front party needed to renew itself and that she would start the “deep transformation of our movement”, vowing to lead it into upcoming parliamentary elections.
She also said she had wished Mr Macron success in tackling the “huge challenges” facing him.
President François Hollande congratulated Mr Macron and said the result showed the French people wanted to unite around the “values of the republic”.
The BBC’s Hugh Schofield in Paris says this is the most remarkable success story of how a man who three years ago was utterly unknown to the French public, through sheer self-belief, energy – and connections – forged a political movement that has trounced all the established French political parties.
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