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French foreign minister says 2 journalists killed in northern Mali were shot to death

  • This combination of undated photos provided by Radio France International shows journalists Ghislaine Dupont, left, and Claude Verlon. French and Malian officials said gunmen in Kidal, northern Mali abducted and killed the two French radio journalists on assignment Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, grabbing the pair as they left the home of a rebel leader. (AP Photo/RFI)

    This combination of undated photos provided by Radio France International shows journalists Ghislaine Dupont, left, and Claude Verlon. French and Malian officials said gunmen in Kidal, northern Mali abducted and killed the two French radio journalists on assignment Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, grabbing the pair as they left the home of a rebel leader. (AP Photo/RFI)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this picture taken July 26, 2013, Malian soldiers traveling in convoy across the desert arrive at the entrance to Kidal in northern Mali. Gunmen abducted and killed two French radio journalists on assignment in northern Mali on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, French and Malian officials said, grabbing the pair as they left the home of a rebel leader. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

    In this picture taken July 26, 2013, Malian soldiers traveling in convoy across the desert arrive at the entrance to Kidal in northern Mali. Gunmen abducted and killed two French radio journalists on assignment in northern Mali on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, French and Malian officials said, grabbing the pair as they left the home of a rebel leader. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this July 27, 2013 file photo, a French soldier patrols at dusk in a central market in Kidal, Mali. French and Malian officials said gunmen in Kidal abducted and killed two French radio journalists, Claude Verlon and Ghislaine Dupont, on assignment on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, grabbing the pair as they left the home of a rebel leader. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell, File)

    FILE - In this July 27, 2013 file photo, a French soldier patrols at dusk in a central market in Kidal, Mali. French and Malian officials said gunmen in Kidal abducted and killed two French radio journalists, Claude Verlon and Ghislaine Dupont, on assignment on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, grabbing the pair as they left the home of a rebel leader. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell, File)  (The Associated Press)

French foreign minister says that two journalists kidnapped and killed in northern Mali were shot to death.

Laurent Fabius said Sunday that the killing of Ghislaine Dupont, 51, and Claude Verlon, 58, was "odious, abject and revolting."

The journalists, who worked for Radio France Internationale, were abducted Saturday after an interview with a rebel leader in the town of Kidal, which remains under the de facto control of rebels despite the presence of French and U.N. troops.

Fabius said one journalist had been hit with three bullets, the other two.

RFI chief Marie-Christine Saragosse said the bodies were lying 80 meters (87 feet) from a locked car.

Fabius said "action was immediately taken to try to find the killers" but didn't elaborate.