Gunmen have kidnapped four Chinese construction workers in the southern Nigerian state of Cross River.

The police spokesperson for the state, Irene Ugboh Itohan, confirmed the incident to the BBC.

She said a policeman working with the Chinese nationals was killed during the abduction which happened near a quarry site in the remote area of Akampka on Tuesday night.

Security personnel have been deployed to search for the expatriates.

It is not yet clear why they were seized by the gunmen but kidnapping for ransom is rampant across Nigeria with both locals and foreigners targeted.

In some cases the abductors kill their captives if their demands are not met.