MOSCOW, November 17 (Sputnik), Ekaterina Blinova — The Islamic State has released a video claiming it had beheaded another US citizen, Peter Kassig, an aid worker captured by jihadists in Syria last year.
"President Barack Obama confirmed Kassig's slaying after a US review of the video, which also showed the mass beheadings of a dozen Syrian soldiers," the Associated Press reported.
The US President has denounced the execution of the American aid worker as an act of "pure evil", saying Peter Kassig "was taken from us in an act of pure evil by a terrorist group that the world rightly associates with inhumanity," as quoted by the media outlet.
The media source elaborates that Peter Kassig was a former US Army Ranger deployed to Iraq in 2007. "After being medically discharged, he returned to the Middle East in 2012 and formed a relief group, Special Emergency Response and Assistance, to aid Syrian refugees," the Associated Press points out. Peter Kassig, a professional EMT (Emergency Medical Technician), who delivered food and medical supplies for injured Syrians, was seized by jihadists on October 1, 2013, in eastern Syria.
"This is Peter Edward Kassig, a US citizen of your country. Peter, who fought against the Muslims in Iraq while serving as a soldier under the American Army, doesn't have much to say. His previous cellmates have already spoken on his behalf. You claim to have withdrawn from Iraq four years ago. We said to you then that you are liars," a militant dressed in a black hood said in the video.
It is worth mentioning that the insurgent speaking with the British accent is believed to be the so-called "Jihadi John," the Independent notes. Previous videos released by ISIL allegedly showed the same individual whom the FBI has already identified, but has not yet caught.
"We say to you, Obama: You claim to have withdrawn from Iraq four years ago. Here you are: You have not withdrawn. Rather, you hid some of your forces behind your proxies," the jihadist said apparently referring to the US-led coalition forces.
The footage also shows the beheadings of about 14 men dressed in blue jumpsuits and identified as Syrian pilots. The militant with the British accent warned in the video that the US soldiers deployed to Iraq will be captured and face the similar execution.
However, the last video differs from those released before. "It does not show Mr. Kassig being killed nor does it feature him, as was the case in the previous videos, making a last statement to the camera. Nor this time was a new captive identified for execution in the future," the Independent points out.
It is worth mentioning that while most part of the footage was professionally shot and edited, the end was "less-scripted." This fact triggered speculations including a version of Kassig's possible attempt to escape and suggestions that some circumstances sent the jihadists on the run before they had edited the whole film.
"The final Kassig execution section is definitely different from previous videos. The message to President Obama from Jihadi John is sloppy, jumbled and redundant. His joke about Kassig having nothing to say seems like a defensive way of covering up the fact that they don't have a video of his actual beheading or weren't able to make one," said Jarret Brachman, a counterterrorism expert and a US intelligence adviser as cited by the New York Times.