Olivier Dubois Photograph:( Reuters )
"I'm Olivier Dubois. I'm French. I'm a journalist. I was kidnapped in Gao on April 8 by the JNIM (al Qaeda North Africa), he said.
French journalist Olivier Dubois has been kidnapped in Mali on April 8, Reporters Without Borders said on Wednesday.
In a video circulating on social media, Olivier Dubois said that he had been kidnapped in Mali in early April by a jihadist group with links to al Qaeda.
"I'm Olivier Dubois. I'm French. I'm a journalist. I was kidnapped in Gao on April 8 by the JNIM (al Qaeda North Africa).
"I'm speaking to my family, my friends and the French authorities for them to do everything in their power to free me," Dubois said in a 21-second video shared on social media. Reuters was not immediately able to confirm the clip's authenticity.
Malian authorities were not immediately available for comment. The French foreign ministry declined to comment.
Mali has been in turmoil since a 2012 uprising prompted mutinous soldiers to overthrow the president. The power vacuum that resulted ultimately led to an Islamic insurgency and a French-led campaign that ousted the jihadists from the cities they controlled in northern Mali in 2013.
But insurgents remain active and extremist groups affiliated with al-Qaida and the Islamic State group have moved from the arid north to more populated central Mali since 2015, attacking targets and stoking animosity and violence between ethnic groups in the region.
(With inputs from agencies)