A camel given to French President Francois Hollande as a gift for driving out Islamist militants in Mali has since been killed and eaten, according to France’s defense minister Jeane-Yves Le Drian.
The camel was given to Hollande during a Malian ceremony in which he quipped, "I will use it as a means of transport as often as possible."
Hollande, who originally intended to take the camel home and hand him over to a French zoo, ran into an array of red tape. Given France’s climate, he decided to leave the camel with a foster family in Timbuktu.
Le Drian told The Telegraph that the family slaughtered the young animal and put it into a traditional African tagine. Older camel is, he said, almost inedible.
Said Toureg of Timbuktu told Hollande that the camel was stolen from him after his home was destroyed in a French air raid.
Camel milk, meat and even blood is often used in African cuisine. Raw camel liver and camel stew are very popular preparations.