The lifeless body of a child was found inside the landing gear of a plane after it touched down in Paris.
Local media report the stowaway was a child aged 10 but Air France has declined to comment.
The body was discovered after an Air France flight from the Ivory Coast in West Africa landed at the French capital on Tuesday afternoon, the airline confirmed. The plane, a Boeing 777, landed in Paris shortly after 5pm with the discovery made by airport staff a short time later.
An investigation is now underway, France’s national airline said.
In a statement, the company said: “Air France confirms that the lifeless body of a stowaway was found in the landing gear compartment of the aircraft operating flight AF703 from Abidjan to Paris-Charles de Gaulle on January 7, 2020.”
A spokesman expressed Air France’s “deepest sympathy and compassion at this human tragedy”.
The journey between Abidjan and Paris takes around six hours. A source in the office of the local prosecutor leading the investigation said she was not aware of the stowaway’s age or identity.