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#Elections2019: Counting to begin in European elections as polls open in 21 countries

Counting is set to begin this morning in the European Elections.

However, results of the votes here will not be announced until 10pm tonight due to a European-wide embargo.

21 EU countries go to the polls today, with the results of the seven countries that have already voted not released until their polls close.

In Ireland South, Fine Gael MEP Sean Kelly looks set to top the poll amid a tight race for the rest of the seats.

23 candidates are looking to fill five seats in a constituency that stretches from Bray down Tramore and from Killarney up to the Burren.

The RTE-TG4-Red C exit poll showed sitting MEP Sean Kelly looks likely to be elected first on 16% of first preference votes.

Sinn Fein's Liadh Ni Riada and Fianna Fail's Billy Kelleher are currently both on 13%.

The Green Party will be hoping Grace O'Sullivan, who is on 12%, can get over the line with help from transfers.

Independent Mick Wallace is on 10%, with Fianna Fail's Malcolm Byrne Deirdre Clune of Fine Gael both on 9%.

There is a margin of error of 4& and transfers could completely change the outcome.

It could be a number of days before we know who'll have done enough to be elected to the European Parliament.

In Dublin, a full tally is expected once the staff begin counting the votes from Dublin City, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, Fingal and South Dublin.

However, partial tallies and exit polls all predict the extraordinary success of the Green Party’s Ciaran Cuffe who could take 23% of the first preference votes.

He comfortably leads Fine Gael’s Frances Fitzgerald who’s on 14% while her running mate Mark Durkan is on 5%.

The Independents4Change TD Clare Daly, is on 12%, as is Fianna Fail’s Barry Andrews.

Outgoing MEP Sinn Féin's Lynn Boylan is fighting for her seat on 10%.

The Social Democrats’ Gary Gannon is on 6% and Labour’s Alex White is on 5%.

This constituency will have four seats in the aftermath of Brexit.

Meanwhile, Fine Gael Minister Michael Ring, says he is confident that both candidates from his party contesting the European Elections in the Midlands Northwest will get elected.

Fine Gael's sitting MEP Mairead McGuinness, who is on 23%, is expected to easily top the poll, a result that could see her transfers drag fellow candidate Maria Walsh, who is on 10%, over the line into the fourth seat.

Sinn Fein’s Matt Carthy is on 15%, while Green Party first-time candidate Saoirse McHugh, who is in with a shock chance of winning a seat, is on 10%.

Sitting MEP Luke Ming Flanagan is also on 10%, while Peter Casey, who is also running as an Independent, is on 7%.

Fianna Fails Brendan Smith and Anne Rabbitte are on 6% and 3% respectively.

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