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Emmanuel Macron inaugurated for second term in office

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By Euronews  with AP, AFP
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President of the Constitutional Council, Laurent Fabius, announced the official results of the presidential election, in front of 450 guests, under the golds of the Elysée vil
President of the Constitutional Council, Laurent Fabius, announced the official results of the presidential election, in front of 450 guests, under the golds of the Elysée vil   -   Copyright  Gonzalo Fuentes/Pool via AP

French President Emmanuel Macron has been inaugurated for a second term during a ceremony on Saturday at the Elysée presidential palace, vowing to first take action to avoid any further escalation of Russia’s war in Ukraine before going on to focus on promoting France and Europe on the world stage.

Macron was reelected for five years on 24 April in a runoff that saw him beat out far-right rival Marine Le Pen.

About 500 guests were invited to the ceremony, where the president of the Constitutional Council read out a formal declaration of the election results. 

Macron was be given the necklace of Grand Master of the Legion of Honor, France's highest distinction, before making a speech in which he promised to leave a legacy of "a more livable planet" and "a stronger France." 

The president also promised to find a “fair method” to govern the country and ease social tensions by making the government and parliament work together with unions, associations and other people from the political, economic, social and cultural world.

In his ten minutes speech, President Macron called for "relentless action" for France to become "a more independent nation" and to "live better and to build our own French and European responses to the century's challenges.”

Gonzalo Fuentes / The Associated Press
France's Military Chief of Staff Benoit Puga & French President Emmanuel Macron his inauguration for a second term at the Elysee palace, in Paris, 7 May 2022Gonzalo Fuentes / The Associated Press

Child-friendly ceremony at the Elysée

The event seemed unusually child-friendly for French presidential ceremonies, with several dignitaries bringing their children -- and at least two in baby strollers. Macron, 44, has no children of his own but has step-children and grandchildren, some of whom were there.

Invited guests came primarily from the world of politics, though also included actors, health care workers, military officers and former Presidents Francois Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy. Most of those who received a coveted invite to the event were white men in suits, despite a growing push for diversity in French politics.

After the events at the Elysée palace, President Macron went to the gardens and listened to 21 cannon shots being fired from the Invalides plaza to mark the event, in line with tradition.

Macron also reviewed the military. Troops present at the ceremony included part of the crew of the Monge, the French navy's second-biggest ship that is key to France's nuclear deterrent. It was notably used for the tests of France’s nuclear-capable submarine-launched M51 missiles.

The symbol can be seen as a show of force at times when France is deeply involved in efforts to stop Russia’s war against Ukraine, including via sending truck-mounted cannons and other heavy weapons.

President Macron's second term will formally start on 14 May.