A could of dismay and anger hangs around Madagascar, after two young French citizens were found dead on Sunday, on a beach in the tourist island of Sainte-Marie northeast of the country. French and Madagascan authorities have said that the two, a man and a woman in their early twenties were found to have head injuries and were likely murdered.
They had been volunteering at Cetamada, a local environmental non-profit organisation working to protect ocean mammals.
“The government strongly condemns this act and will ensure that the investigation will be transparent. However this is an isolated act and does not represent Madagascar as a whole. We are a peaceful country,” said Roland Ratsiraka, the country’s tourism minister.
“There is no doubt the two volunteers were murdered. We just need to determine a motive,” added Commander Rajaonson, the chief criminal investigator.
The islanders too did not hide their concerns about the possible impact of this situation on tourism.
“If tourists do not come, we will have nothing to eat,” declared one resident of the island.
According to authorities in the island famous for eco-tourism, this is the first time French citizens have been murdered there. In 2012, a French couple was found dead on a beach in southern Madagascar.