(Corrects to say that message was sent via audio)
LONDON Jan 21 (Reuters) - Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden said in an audio-tape recording on Friday that the release of French hostages held in Niger depended on France's soldiers leaving Muslim lands.
He also said France will pay dearly for its policy in Afghanistan and elsewhere. Seven foreigners, including five French nationals, were kidnapped in Niger in September. Al Qaeda's north African wing claimed responsibility.