Skip to main content

French election: How the Middle East reacted to Macron's win

While Arab leaders congratulated Macron, some social media users thought of cake...
Emmanuel Macron celebrates on the stage at his victory rally near the Louvre in Paris on 7 May (Reuters)

Arab leaders have taken to social media to congratulate Emmanuel Macron for defeating far-right leader Marine Le Pen in France’s presidential election.

Morocco, a former a French colony, was the first to send its message. King Mohammed VI stated this was the “high-point” of Macron’s political career.


Translation: His Highness the Prince of Qatar congratulates Macron on winning in the French presidential elections.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi congratulated Macron on his win and spoke of “strong French-Egyptian relations”.

Sisi said that he looked forward to working with the new French president on “enhancing and developing the close and existing co-operation” of the two nations.

Macron has previously called France's colonial history in Algeria a "crime against humanity" and promised to apologise to the country if elected. 

Abdelaziz Bouteflika, Algeria's current president, praised his comments and said that this "pioneering attitude" would allow for a reconciliation between France and Algeria. 

But one social media user thought Macron's attendance at a VE commemoration on Monday to mark the end of World War II contradicted his previous condemnation of French colonialism. 

Translation: Macron promised Algeria to apologise for France's crimes. In his first day following his election, he attended a commemoration for when his country massacred 50,000 Algerians in one day.

Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi lauded relations between the two countries.

Translation: The King of Saudi Arabia: Congratulations to Emmanuel Macron on being elected as President of France.

Beji Caid Essebsi, president of Tunisia, another former colony, said the victory “reflected the sincerity of the French to its traditional values: liberty, equality, fraternity.”

Translation: The Emir of the state [Kuwait] sends his congratulations to the leader Macron on his election to be President of France.

At the age of just 39, Macron is set to be the country’s youngest leader. But age is just a number for Twitter users in Egypt, who used the election to comment on politics in their own country.

Translation: Here in Egypt the issue isn’t #the_age_of_the_president, the issue is that we don’t have a real President in the first place. #The_republic_of_Military-stan #Macron

Translation: To the people who are happy that the French president is in his thirties and still young: true, our leaders are all well into their sixties but their brains are still teenagers!! France= 0 Egypt = 1

And while other users praised the president-elect...


...some seemed distracted by the reminder of something a little sweeter…

Translation: The moment I saw the hashtag, my mind went somewhere faaaaaaar #Macron