Le Pen's party comes top in Provence in regional election

FILE PHOTO: Marine Le Pen, member of parliament and leader of French far-right National Rally (Rassemblement National) party, delivers a speech during a debate on immigration at the National Assembly in Paris, France, October 7, 2019. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier/File Photo/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - The party of French far-right leader Marine Le Pen came top in the first round of regional elections in the Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur region around Marseille, beating the incumbent centre-right into second place, according to an exit poll.

The Rassemblement National's Thierry Mariani garnered 33% of the vote, the exit poll showed, just ahead of the 30% won by the centre-right's Renaud Muselier, who had struck an alliance with President Emmanuel Macron's party.

(Reporting by Michel Rose; editing by Richard Lough)

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