TUNIS, Tunisia (AA) - With more than one fourth of votes sorted, the first round of the Tunisian presidential election showed on Monday Kais Saied, Nabil Karoui and Abdelfattah Mourou with a shot at qualifying for the second round.
Kais Saied, an independent candidate, garnered 19% of the vote, with Nabil Karoui of the Qalb Tounes (Heart of Tunisia) party taking 14.9% and Abdelfattah Mourou of the Ennahdha party receiving 13.1%.
Presidential elections are being held early in the country after the death of Beji Caid Essebsi, its first democratically-elected president.
In Tunisia's electoral system, a candidate is required to receive a majority of votes to win the presidential ballot. If no candidate gets a majority in the first round, the two candidates with most votes will face off in a second, decisive round.
In this case, it appears that Saied and Karoui will complete in the next round, as both are projected with little chance of taking a majority of votes.
*Bassel Barakat contributed to this report from Ankara