Paris, May 13, 2011
The France 3 journalists Herve Ghesquière and Stéphane Taponier and their guides have been held hostage in Afghanistan since 29 December 2009.
On this 500th day of captivity, my thoughts are with them, their families and close friends.
I can imagine their anguish and suffering. I want to tell them that, from day one, all the State’s resources have been deployed. In Paris, the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs’ crisis unit, in close consultation with the Defence Ministry, has been following the situation of our two fellow countrymen and those accompanying them. On the ground, our staff – including at our embassy in Kabul – are fully mobilized, and efforts are continuing, in liaison with the Afghan authorities, to secure our compatriots’ release.
I’d also like to pay tribute to all those in France who are working to ensure we don’t forget them: the support committees and the editorial staff of France Télévisions, whose chairman, Rémy Pflimlin, I met this morning.
We’re continuing our efforts with the same tenacity for our other hostages in the Sahel, Somalia and Gaza. Everything is being done, with the greatest determination and responsibility, to ensure they can rejoin their families and close friends./.