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Europe: Jospin Named New French Prime Minister

Paris, 2 June 1997 (RFE/RL) - French Socialist party leader Lionel Jospin was formally appointed France's new Prime Minister today following the left's victory in parliamentary elections.

The announcement follows a meeting between Jospin and French President Jacques Chirac who earlier in the day accepted the resignation of defeated center-right Prime Minister Alain Juppe.

After the meeting, Jospin told reporters he had accepted Chirac's offer to form a new government, which he said could be completed as soon as this week.

Final results today showed the Socialist-led leftist coalition won 318 seats in the 577-member National Assembly in yesterday's decisive runoff. The communists, who won 38 seats, are expected to announce later today their demands for taking part in a coalition government with the socialists.