Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Nigerian music: Afropolitan star Yemi Alade on european tour

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Media reactions to Boris Nemtsov's murder

Read more

DEBATE

The Murder of Boris Nemtsov: Who Killed Charismatic Opposition Figure? (part two)

Read more

DEBATE

The Murder of Boris Nemtsov: Who Killed Charismatic Opposition Figure?

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Dealing with returning jihadists: Is de-radicalisation possible?

Read more

ENCORE!

Noel Gallagher, Bryce Dessner and ‘David Bowie is’ in Paris

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

'Agent Storm': How a militant Islamist became a CIA spy

Read more

FOCUS

China: New reform set to benefit migrants

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

Caged children in Syria and dumpster diving in Ivory Coast

Read more

Africa

France identifies body of geologist abducted in Mali

© Photo: AFP

Video by Sandrina GOMES , Halla Mohieddeen

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-07-16

The French president's office confirmed on Monday that a body found in northern Mali was that of French geologist Philippe Verdon (pictured) who was kidnapped in the central Malian town of Hombori in November 2011.

France confirmed on Monday that a body found in northern Mali was that of Philippe Verdon, a French geologist who was kidnapped in November 2011.

In a statement released on Monday, French President François Hollande expressed his condolences to the victim’s loved ones.

"I express my total solidarity to his family and loved ones,” said Hollande. "I share the indignation of the French people and I reiterate that those responsible for his death must be identified and brought to justice."

Verdon’s remains will be transferred to France from Mali "as soon as possible," Hollande added.

The confirmation came a day after Hollande said there was a “very strong chance” that the body, found in Mali, could be that of Verdon during a televised interview on Bastille Day.

Verdon and another Frenchman were seized in the central Malian town of Hombori on November 24, 2011.

In March, al Qaeda's North African branch, AQIM (Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb) said it had beheaded Verdon in retaliation for France's military intervention in Mali.

AQIM is currently holding eight Europeans hostage - including five French nationals.

Thierry Dol, Daniel Larribe, Pierre Legrand and Marc Féret were kidnapped in a mining town in neighbouring Niger by al Qaeda-linked militants on September 16, 2010.

Larribe’s wife, Françoise Larribe, was also captured but was released in 2011.

The fifth French hostage, Serge Lazarevic, was kidnapped along with Verdon.

AQIM said in late June that the eight Europeans are alive and that it would soon release a new video of the five Frenchmen.

Date created : 2013-07-15

  • MALI - FRANCE

    Body of French hostage 'found in northern Mali'

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Hollande believes hostages in North Africa alive

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Al Qaeda says hostages in North Africa alive and well

    Read more

COMMENT(S)