A group of armed kidnappers has seized three people and killed a fourth in northern Mali.
Reports say a German man was shot dead while the hostages are from the Netherlands and South Africa
It happened in the city of Timbuktu in a region where al-Qaeda is known to have attacked westerners. The day before this latest incident two French people were abducted from the nearby village of Hombori.
It is being reported that all foreigners have now been rounded up and taken to the police station, ready for transportation to the capital Bamako.
One French woman said: “I’m staying in Bamako, I go out in Bamako, but I don’t go outside of Bamako, I’m just going home, because I follow the instructions and I don’t want to take any risks.”
Another man added:“We’re staying in Bamako, but we don’t know if the city is safe from an attack or from any kidnapping. We don’t know anything.”
Huge swathes of the Sahel region of the south Sahara desert have now been declared off-limits to foreigners.