A prefect kidnapped by gunmen was found dead on Monday in a forest in western Burkina Faso plagued by jihadist violence, security and local sources said Wednesday.
In a statement, the Ministry of Territorial Administration, Decentralisation and Security announced "the death on 8 May of Mr Kaboré Amadou", prefect and "president of the special delegation of Tchériba", in the Boucle du Mouhon region (west).
The circumstances of the death of Mr Kaboré, whose burial is scheduled for Wednesday in Tanghin-Dassouri (centre), were not specified in the statement.
But according to local sources, the prefect had taken the road on Monday evening from Dédougou, the regional capital where he had attended a meeting, to Tchériba, where he was acting as mayor.
He was accompanied by a colleague and his driver when they were intercepted by armed men on the road between Dédougou and Tchériba, near the locality of Karo, according to the same sources, who said that the driver and the colleague managed to escape from their captors.
The security forces launched a sweep as soon as they heard he had disappeared: his body was found in the Karo forest, some 20 km from Dédougou, according to security sources, who did not say how Mr Kaboré had died.
In mid-April, the army announced that it had carried out an anti-jihadist operation called Kapidugu ("Beehive" in Moré) in this region, mobilising more than 800 soldiers and volunteers for the defence of the country (VDP, civilian auxiliaries of the army).
Burkina Faso, the scene of two military coups in 2022, has been caught since 2015 in a spiral of jihadist violence that began in Mali and Niger a few years earlier and has spread beyond their borders.
The violence has left more than 10,000 civilians and soldiers dead over the past eight years, according to NGOs, and some two million people internally displaced.