PARIS (AFP) – France’s defence minister on Tuesday ruled out talks with the abductors of a French family seized in Cameroon, after a video of the hostages appeared on YouTube.
“We do not negotiate on these terms, with these groups,” Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said in a radio interview.
“What we do is use all possible means to ensure the release of hostages, be they these or others,” he said. “But we do not play this bidding game because that is terrorism.”
He spoke a day after a video of the seven members of the family appeared on YouTube with their abductors who claimed to be from the Islamist extremist group Boko Haram and demanded the release of prisoners.
The family — a father, mother, four children aged 5 to 12, and an uncle — were seized on February 19 while visiting a national park in Cameroon.
They are believed to have since been taken over the border into Nigeria’s restive northeast.