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Far right makes big gains in EU elections as center right holds majority, early data indicates

A woman casts her ballot paper for the European elections at a polling station.

Picture Alliance | Picture Alliance | Getty Images

Populist, far-right parties have won record support in this year’s European Parliament elections, early exit polls indicated Sunday.

The far-right Identity and Democracy (ID) group made major gains, while the right-wing European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) saw a slight uptick in votes, according to the first official projection released by the EU at 8:30 p.m. local time.

The center-right European People’s Party (EPP) is once again projected to win the most parliamentary seats, with a marginally bigger majority than before.

The projection is based on exit polls, national estimates and pre-election polling data, and follows a four-day, EU-wide vote.

The liberal Renew Europe (RE) and the Greens/European Free Alliance, meanwhile, are both seen losing a significant number of seats.

Over 400 million people across the EU’s 27 member states were eligible to vote for the next European Parliament — one of three institutions at the heart of the EU.

The European Parliament, which is responsible for deciding EU laws and budgets, is the only directed elected institution within the bloc. It is made up of Members of European Parliament (MEPs), who are elected by each member state and come together to form European party groups.

This is a breaking news story. Please check back for updates.

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