France does not consider Rodolfo Cazares, an orchestra leader kidnapped by a Mexican drug cartel, to be a political hostage, a French Foreign Ministry spokesman said Tuesday.

No demands have been made by the kidnappers, the Foreign Ministry spokesman said.

Cazares's wife, Ludivine Barbier, has asked French officials to reclassify her husband as a political hostage, a step that would put him in the same class as the eight other Frenchmen kidnapped in the world, the majority of them in Africa.

"There have been no demands in his case, we cannot consider him a political hostage," the Foreign Ministry spokesman said.

Cazares's wife has the full support of the ministry and of French consular officials in Mexico, the official said.

Cazares, who married Barbier in 2006 and obtained French citizenship last year, was kidnapped on July 9, 2011, in Matamoros, a border city in the northeastern Mexican state of Tamaulipas.

The couple was dining at the house owned by Cazares's parents when between six and eight gunmen wielding assault rifles burst into the residence, tied them up and blindfolded them.

A total of 18 people were kidnapped that night, with the Gulf drug cartel supposedly behind the abductions.

Cazares was apparently kidnapped because of his grandfather's mistress, whose sons have links to a rival drug cartel, the daily Le Parisien reported earlier this year.

The kidnappers released the women and children three days later, but Rodolfo and his father are still being held captive.

The family paid ransom of $100,000 but has not heard from the kidnappers since late July 2011.

Mexican authorities "are not interested" in the case and French officials asked that the matter not be publicized in the media, "undoubtedly because of the case of Florence Cassez, which already caused tensions between France and Mexico," Barbier said in an interview published in October.

The case of Cassez, a Frenchwoman convicted of kidnapping and sentenced to 60 years in prison in Mexico, led to some sharp exchanges last year between Paris and Mexico City. EFE