NEW YORK (AFP) - An army of global journalists is descending on the United States to cover Election Day, November 4, in a reflection of unprecedented worldwide interest in the American presidential election. "Our audience's interest in the US presidential election this time is definitely much higher than the last time four years ago," said Keiko Matsuyama, who is coordinating an 11-member team for Japan's TV Asahi's US vote coverage. "Our viewers " as well as we reporters " are interested in the rise of the first African-American US president. Also, interest is mounting about US policies to address the financial crisis," she said. TV Asahi, one of Japan's private broadcasters, said it will begin live coverage of the results from 10:30 am Japan time (0130 GMT) on November 5. Democrat Barack Obama's campaign has accredited 1,500 journalists for an Election Night event at campaign headquarters in Chicago, home base of the 47-year-old Illinois senator seeking to become America's first black president. "There has been a huge interest in Africa," said Constance Ikokwu, Washington correspondent from the leading newspaper This Day, in Nigeria. "There is an emotional attachment between Africans and Senator Obama," she said. Due to media fascination with the most prominent African-American candidate to date, as well as polls that show Obama leading his Republican rival John McCain, more journalists have chosen to base themselves in Chicago than in Phoenix, Arizona, where McCain serves as senator. "I don't think we have ever seen media interest in a US presidential election this high," said Keith Peterson, Media Relations Officer at the State Department's Washington Foreign Press Center. "The numbers of reporters have been astonishing, especially those coming in for the last couple of weeks." Some reporting teams are making the rounds of the United States to try and capture everyday realities in the country. The daily Clarin newspaper out of Buenos Aires has sent reporters along the legendary Route 66, which cuts across the country, to "meet people, go inside towns and post Internet photos, videos and blogs" about their experiences, said chief international editor Marcelo Cantelmi. For French channels Canal Plus and I-Tele, anchor Michel Denisot will toss to a team of special correspondents in Chicago, Phoenix and New York. In all, 50 team members will combine to broadcast eight hours of continuous coverage on a special show called "American Night." US veteran broadcaster Dan Rather will comment exclusively for European audiences on voting day. "There is enormous curiosity about Barack Obama, who has become something of a phenomenon in French society," said Laurence Haim, the chief New York editor of Canal Plus. "People want to see if someone who is an outsider and is black is going to win the US presidential election," Haim said. However, she lamented the "extremely difficult access for foreign media." In India, the US presidential debates were broadcast live on major channels. "We are very interested in what happens in the elections for obvious reasons " the implications for Asia, India in particular, and the economic crisis," said Amit Baruah, foreign editor of the English daily the Hindustan Times, which has sent extra staff to cover the event. Al-Jazeera said it was sending 12 extra journalists to key locations in the United States, such as swing states Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Colorado and Illinois. "The interest in the region is tremendous, as we have already found out through several months of coverage," said Abderrahim Foukara, Washington bureau chief at Al-Jazeera. "That is so for at least two reasons: US involvement in the (Middle East) region and Barack Obama being the first African American presidential candidate with a real chance of becoming president of the United States." Leading broadcasters from three Israeli stations also plan to cover the election live from the United States.