Police say that American Christian missionary John Allen Chau was killed by islanders after paying fishermen to take him to the isolated island of North Sentinel in India. The remote island’s natives are so hostile and isolated, authorities now hesitate to go in and retrieve his body. Police in India said Chau was killed last week on an unauthorized visit to North Sentinel, where people live as their ancestors did thousands of years ago and where outsiders are seen with suspicion and attacked. Police said Chau apparently was shot with arrows and buried on the beach.
Authorities are consulting with experts before deciding how to go about recovering his body. Dependra Pathak, police chief for India’s Andaman and Nicobar islands, where North Sentinel is located, said “We have to see what is possible, taking utmost care of the sensitivity of the group and the legal requirements.”
Chau was determined to visit the island and paid fishermen $325 to take him close to it, officials said. He then paddled to shore on a kayak, bringing a Bible and gifts that included fish, a soccer ball and fishing line.