A Masaai woman casts her vote in the Kenyan general election in Ilbissil.

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Demand for clichés is expected to reach a peak as foreign correspondents fly in to cover the election. “We anticipate a run on ‘hotly contested’ and ‘neck and neck’” said an unemployed militant.

Every reporter will be issued with an election package as they step out of the plane and are greeted by the tropical heat of Africa.

Non-government organisations are understood to have teams on standby, ready to supply quotes about rampant corruption, grinding poverty, and soaring unemployment.

Photograph: Riccardo Gangale/AP

Obama celebrated his election victory this week by immediately tweeting an emotional photograph of him and his wife, Michelle, embracing, and it has become the most re-tweeted picture in history. That’s partly because it captures his humanity and the sincerity of his love for his family, his wife and daughters, to whom he paid lavish tribute in his eloquent victor’s speech.

It also indicates the nature of his support: younger people who tweet, as opposed to older folk who go hunting. Obama is on the right side of history, and that includes the technological future. In this election, the America of Steve Jobs defeated that of Donald Trump.

- Jonathan Jones on the most retweeted moment in history

A woman walks past a closed shop plastered with election campaign posters for the Democratic Left party and Syriza in central Athens. Pictures of Greece preparing for a crucial election Photograph: John Kolesidis/Reuters
Marine Le Pen, candidate for the far-right National Front, votes in Henin-Beaumont Photograph: Pascal Rossignol/Reuters

From our correspondent in Paris Angelique Chrisafis following last night’s first round election results:

The surge by the extreme-right Marine Le Pen - the highest ever score by the Front National - complicates matters. The race will now be tight and awkward.

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