France blasts 'cruelty' as Boko Haram displays kidnapped family
updated 11:05 PM EST, Mon February 25, 2013
Cameroonian security officials stand at the vehicle a French family was driving before being kidnapped.
- Nigerian Islamist rebels show video of kidnapped family
- France denounces the scene as "cruelty without limits"
- Boko Haram wants jailed members and their wives released
- A masked spokesman says France has declared war in Islam
(CNN) -- Islamist rebels in Nigeria on Monday released video of a French family kidnapped in neighboring Cameroon last week, leading France to blast the scene as one of "cruelty without limits."
The seven-member family was flanked by armed fighters from the Boko Haram movement in the brief video. One of the captive men reads a statement demanding that Nigeria and Cameroon free jailed members of Boko Haram, which is battling to establish Islamic rule in northern Nigeria, and their families.
"Meet all the demands we have mentioned, and if you leave out one of them, we will kill these hostages," the masked man says.
The family -- a couple, their four children and an uncle -- were seized in a national park in remote northern Cameroon on February 19. Authorities in Cameroon said they were quickly spirited across the border into Nigeria.
Obasanjo: Boko Haram undermine security
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius denounced the video, saying, "All of the state services are mobilized to free our countrymen."
"For all of us, these images are terribly shocking. They demonstrate cruelty without limits," Fabius said in a statement released Monday afternoon.
The kidnapping has raised fears of Westerners being targeted by Islamist militant groups in Africa in the wake of the French military intervention against other Islamist rebels in Mali. The masked man in the video says French President Francois Hollande "started war against Islam, and we must fight him everywhere."
"He also should learn that we have spread everywhere to save our oppressed brothers," the masked man adds.
The father works for the French company GDF Suez and is based in Yaounde, the capital in southern Cameroon. GDF Suez, which is developing a natural gas liquefaction project in Cameroon, said it was working closely with the French Foreign Ministry.
Part of complete coverage on
updated 6:17 PM EDT, Tue May 21, 2013
The image of the Gaza boy and his father under a hail of Israeli bullets became a powerful symbol. Now Israel insists its military is not to blame.
updated 8:47 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
The tornado that ripped through Oklahoma saw teachers rise to be surrogate parents, protectors and heroes, according to LZ Granderson.
updated 1:14 PM EDT, Tue May 21, 2013
Did you know that hurricanes can also produce tornadoes? Read facts you didn't know about destructive twisters.
updated 9:01 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
The petite frame of 19-year-old Zoe Smith should fool nobody -- she's a weightlifting warrior who has fought stereotypes and broken a British record.
updated 12:41 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe calls women "Japan's most underutilized resource," yet traditions have been hard to overcome.
updated 10:55 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
According to the United Nations' mission in Iraq, 712 Iraqis were violently killed in April 2013. This is both normal and extraordinary.
updated 7:21 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
Myanmar's Muslims have generally coexisted with the Buddhist majority. But ethnic fault lines are exposed as it emerges from military rule.
updated 8:09 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
Actresses Carey Mulligan, Isla Fisher and Elizabeth Debicki tell CNN who gave them inspiration for their characters.
updated 1:21 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
A quarter century after his death, American pop artist Andy Warhol has popped up in China again after his first and only trip to the country in 1982.
updated 10:39 AM EDT, Wed May 22, 2013
Revolutionary "bionic exoskeletons," like the metal suit worn by comic book hero Tony Stark, may be closer than you think.
updated 3:51 PM EDT, Tue May 21, 2013
Photos: From Sharon Stone to Matt Damon, browse through the best from the Cannes red carpet this year.
Damnit we have work to do ... but not before we have another go at this annoyingly difficult web-based game.