A top official in Oursi, a town in Burkina Faso bordering Mali, has been killed by suspected jihadists, sources said on Tuesday.
"Armed individuals shot the Oursi prefect, Patrick Kabore, at his home, which was also set on fire," a security source told AFP.
The body of the prefect - the government's highest representative in the area - was found not far from his official residence after the attack which took place at around 23:00 (2300 GMT) on Monday, the source added.
"A thorough search is under way to apprehend the individuals" whose identity and number have not been determined so far, said a police source, who added "it is surely jihadists."
According to sources, the residence of the prefect - a police officer by training and stationed there since July 2016 - was the target of an attack last March.
Previously spared by armed groups active in the Sahel, Burkina Faso has been hit by increasingly frequent attacks in the north over the past three years.
An official report found 133 people have been killed in 80 attacks in the region. The capital Ouagadougou was hit by three jihadist attacks in two years, leaving nearly 60 dead.
In recent months around 100 people were arrested and explosive devices neutralised during search operations in the eastern and northern regions.