Nairobi - The decapitated body of a Kenyan journalist has been found in a forest in a case possibly related to his writing, an international media watchdog said on Tuesday.

Paris-based Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said it was shocked by the killing of Francis Kainda Nyaruri, a freelancer based in the southwestern town of Nyambira.

His corpse, also with deep gashes and hands tied behind his back, was found on January 29 two weeks after he disappeared.

RSF said in a statement everything possible should be done to establish the motive for the murder and to bring those responsible to justice "keeping in mind its shocking symbolism for the Kenyan population".

"According to the privately-owned daily The Standard, Nyaruri had reported being threatened by police officers over several articles he wrote for a local weekly," RSF said.

Police and media bodies were not immediately available to comment.

  • Writing by Andrew Cawthorne; Editing by Louise Ireland