Police have confirmed that an American man was killed after visiting a remote island in India’s remote Andaman and Nicobar chain.
Officials say that John Allen Chau was killed by a community of hunter-gatherers who live there isolated from the outside world.
The North Sentinel Island, which is off-bounds to visitors, is home to the Sentinelese, who killed the man after he was illegally ferried there by fishermen.
“A murder case has been registered,” one of the officials told Reuters. Both officials sought anonymity as they are not authorised to speak to the media.
An investigation has been launched, Deepak Yadav, a police official in the island chain in the bay of Bengal said in a statement.
“We are aware of reports concerning a U.S. citizen in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands,” a spokeswoman for the United States consulate in India’s southern city of Chennai said in an email.
“When a U.S. citizen is missing, we work closely with local authorities as they carry out their search efforts,” she added.
One police source said Chau had made previous visits to the islands and had a strong desire to meet the Sentinelese.
Chau reportedly hired a fishing dinghy and reached the vicinity of the island, with the help of the fishermen, before transferring to a canoe on November 16.
His body is yet to be retrieved but was spotted the following day by the fishermen on their return. The fishermen who took the man across to the island have been arrested.