Read more: EU elections – live updates on the final day of voting
All updates in Universal Coordinated Time (UTC)
16:31 In Greece, the conservative opposition New Democracy party is the projected winner, according to exit polls. New Democracy is projected to win 32% to 36% of the vote, compared to 25% to 29% for the ruling left-wing Syriza.
The extreme right Golden Dawn and the Communist party are expected to get between 5% and 7% each.
16:00 Initial official projections in Germany show that Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) and its Bavarian sister party the CSU have come out ahead with 27.9% , but suffered a dip in support of 7.5 points. The losses were even heavier for the CDU’s coalition partner the Social Democrats (SPD), who came in third with 15.6% support, down 11.7% from the last EU elections in 2014.
The Green party continued to reap the rewards of the coalition shedding votes and increasing concern about climate change. It came in second in Germany with 21.8%, an increase of 11.1%. The far-right AfD came in fourth with 10.5%, and the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP) and the Left party each got 5.5% of the vote. Other smaller parties accounted for the remaining 13%.
Germany is Europe’s largest constituency with 96 seats in the 751-seat European Parliament.
15:39 Local media in Belgium have said that the far-right and nationalist parties are ahead in the Flemish-speaking north, while the Social Party is leading in the francophone south. In Flanders, the nationalist N-VA party has lost some votes to the far-right Vlaams Belang, but is still slightly in front. In Wallonia, the socialists were at 27.2%, followed by Prime Minister Charles Michel’s center-right MR party at 20%.
15:22 Austrian public broadcaster ORF has reported in initial exit polls that the recent scandal that took down the former far-right Freedom Party (FPÖ) Vice Chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache just last week did little to dent the party’s support.
The FPÖ was down only 2.2 points, to 17.5%. Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, who faces a confidence vote in parliament on Monday, saw his People’s Party (ÖVP) gain 7.5% support placing it clearly in the lead.
es/rc (AP, AFP, dpa, Reuters)