updated 7/10/2007 8:55:46 PM ET 2007-07-11T00:55:46

Two gunmen attacked a German couple photographing wildlife in this normally peaceful country, killing the man in front of his wife and taking her on a high-speed chase.

Police were searching Tuesday for two men suspected of killing Johannes Fellinger, 56, in a rare attack on tourists in this southern African nation.

Johannes and Elke Fellinger arrived only hours before they were attacked Sunday about 35 miles west of the capital, Windhoek, police spokesman Stephan Nuuyi said. The husband was shot in the head and died instantly, he said.

"The deceased was apparently taking pictures of baboons when two men emerged from the bush and confronted his wife, who had remained in their rented vehicle," Nuuyi said.

After shooting the man, the attackers threw his body into the vehicle and drove off with his wife, police said. They later dumped the man's body in a dry riverbed and were pursued at high speed by a farmer.

During the chase, the car overturned and the attackers escaped on foot, leaving Elke Fellinger behind. She was being treated for shock and minor injuries at Windhoeks Catholic Hospital.

‘Bad news for the tourism industry’
Deputy German Ambassador Ute Koenig said the attack was "bad news for the tourism industry."

"We are looking after the widow and have been visiting her," Koenig said, adding that the embassy would help in repatriating Johannes Fellinger's body.

Namibia, a former German protectorate that was annexed by South Africa, gained independence in 1990. About 50,000 German tourists visit annually, and it is ranked the 13th fastest growing tourist destination in the world.

The Namibia Tourism Board called the attack "deeply regrettable."

"This will require us to double our efforts in damage control, but we want to reassure the international community that its not the order of the day," said Digu Naobeb, the board's acting chief executive officer.

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