The sudden death of a British embassy worker in Lebanon is being investigated by police, government sources have said.

Rebecca Dykes worked at the British embassy in the capital Beirut.

A forensic official in the country has told the Associated Press news agency that Ms Dykes was strangled with a rope.

The unnamed official added that authorities are investigating the exact cause of her death and whether she was sexually assaulted.

A security official, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, told AP Ms Dykes’ body was discovered by the side of a road east of Beirut on Saturday.

A family spokesman said they were “devastated by the loss of our beloved Rebecca”.

“We are doing all we can to understand what happened,” he added.

A Department for International Development spokesman said: “Our thoughts are with Becky’s family and friends at this very upsetting time.

“There is now a police investigation and the FCO (Foreign Office) is providing consular support to Becky’s family and working with the local authorities.”

The Foreign Office has said it is in contact with authorities in Lebanon.

“Following the death of a British woman in Beirut, we are providing support to the family,” a spokesman said.

“We remain in close contact with local authorities. Our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time.”

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