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Last Updated: Friday, 11 June, 2004, 16:01 GMT 17:01 UK
Euro turnout down on last poll
The ballot boxes will remain closed until Monday
Turnout at the Northern Ireland European election is down by more than 5% on the 1999 poll.

Out of more than 1m people eligible to vote, the final figure was 51.72% for Thursday's election.

The poll was heaviest in the west of the province with Fermanagh/South Tyrone registering the highest poll at 66.75%, while turnout was lowest in North Down, with 38%.

It's understood both the DUP and Sinn Fein candidates have polled strongly.

TURNOUT BY CONSTITUENCY
Belfast East: 44.95%
Belfast North: 48.67%
Belfast South: 49.25%
Belfast West: 57.12%
East Antrim: 39.36%
East Londonderry: 51.48%
Fermanagh/S Tyrone: 66.75%
Foyle: 56.35%
Lagan Valley: 46.10%
Mid Ulster: 65.40%
Newry and Armagh: 60.55%
North Antrim: 53.31%
North Down: 38.01%%
South Antrim: 43.87%
South Down: 53.94%
Strangford: 39.93%
Upper Bann: 50.16%
West Tyrone: 62.34%
The figures were calculated after electoral officials checked all the ballot papers on Friday to ensure the vote was in order.

Officials at eight different centres checked that the number of votes in the ballot boxes matched those cast on Thursday.

The counting will not begin until Monday morning as legislation requires that no results should be announced until after the last country in Europe has finished voting.

The last country in Europe does not finish voting until 2100 BST on Sunday.

Seven candidates are chasing the three Northern Ireland seats. Polling began at 0700 BST on Thursday and ended at 2200 BST.

The DUP believes its candidate, Jim Allister, has defended its seat, but history could be made if Sinn Fein displaces the SDLP.

The third seat usually goes to the Ulster Unionists, but observers are watching to see the extent of the impact on Jim Nicholson's vote made by Independent candidate John Gilliland.




WATCH AND LISTEN
BBC NI political editor Mark Devenport
"The turnout was a little higher than some of the dire predictions"



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