Mali to replace French president’s camel after first one accidentally eaten

Someone has eaten the president's camel.

When Malian authorities gave French President François Hollande a baby camel as a gift for his visit in February, neither they nor the president expected the pet would end up on someone's dinner plate.

But Reuters reports that's exactly what happened, after Hollande asked a family in Timbuktu to care for the animal.

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It's been a tough month for the French president, the New York Times points out, what with economic strife, low popularity rankings and a scandal over a former minister's secret bank account.

Now his camel is dead.

Cooked in a stew, the Times reported, after the family who had it apparently misunderstood why the camel was in their custody.

The defense minister, who had been charged with updating the president on how the camel was faring, also had to contact Hollande to tell him the animal was dead, according to the story.

He reportedly received the news from soldiers in the town where the camel-keepers in question lived.

However, authorities in Mali told Reuters they were ashamed the camel had been eaten and they would promptly send a replacement camel to France.

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There is no word on where Hollande is planning to keep his new friend but hopefully the animal finds a home in the president's office, maybe as a greeter at the door.