A French soldier has been killed in a "clash with terrorists" in southeast Mali near the border with Burkina Faso, the French presidential office announced on Thursday.
French President François Hollande paid tribute to Julien Barbé, a soldier from the western town of Angers who was killed overnight by enemy fire.
Barbé's unit was ambushed as they were assisting the crew of a lightly armoured vehicle hit by an IED. Two soldiers were injured in the bombing.
The ambush took place about 200 kilometres south-west of Gao, near the Burkinabe border.
Barbé's death marks the 19th French soldier killed in Mali since Paris sent its military in to prevent jihadi groups from attacking the capital Bamako in January 2013.