01/16/2019 13:44 EST | Updated 01/16/2019 13:44 EST

Canadian Miner Kirk Woodman Kidnapped In Burkina Faso, Country's Government Says

He was kidnapped during a raid on a mining site.

OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso — Burkina Faso's security ministry says a Canadian national has been kidnapped by suspected extremists in the West African nation near its border with Niger.

Spokesman Jean Paul Badoum said Wednesday that the Canadian man was abducted overnight during a raid on a mining site in Tiabongou, about 20 kilometres (12 miles) from Mansila in Yagha province.

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Kirk Woodman was kidnapped near the Burkina Faso-Niger border, Burkina Faso's government says.

Badoum identified the man as Kirk Woodman, who works for the Progress Mineral Mining Company.

There is no immediate comment from Canadian officials.

Burkina Faso recently declared a state of emergency in the region as attacks by Islamic extremists increase, especially along the border with Niger and Mali.

West Africa's Sahel region has seen a number of abductions of foreigners in recent years by extremists linked to al-Qaida or the Islamic State organization.

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