ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia — The U.S. Embassy in Ethiopia is confirming that an American has been killed in a part of the country that has seen months of deadly protests.

The embassy on Wednesday attributed the death to head injuries from a rock thrown by “unknown individuals” on the outskirts of the capital, Addis Ababa.

An Ethiopian official told The Associated Press that the American was an agricultural expert who had gone to the town of Burayu on Tuesday for field work.

Fikadu Tessema, head of the Oromia region’s spokesman’s office, says the agricultural team that went to the town “didn’t ask police protection at the time.”

This is the first foreigner killed in the massive anti-government protests that have claimed the lives of hundreds of protesters since November 2015.