Islamist militants have said a Frenchman kidnapped in Mali is dead.
They gave no details in a call to France’s AFP news agency but said that Gilberto Rodriguez-Leal, who would be 62 now, died because “France is our enemy”.
Camping in the area, he was seized by an al Qaeda-linked group in November 2012 after crossing from Mauritania into Mali.
French President Francois Hollande’s office says he probably died several weeks ago due to the “conditions of his detention” and that his death won’t go unpunished.
French troops intervened in northern Mali last year to prevent Islamists
who had seized the desert region from extending their reach further south.
Another Frenchman kidnapped in Mali in November 2011 is still missing.