MOSCOW, August 20 (RIA Novosti) - US journalist James Foley, who was captured by Islamic State (IS) militants is dead, his mother confirmed Wednesday.
"We have never been prouder of our son Jim. He gave his life trying to expose the world to the suffering of the Syrian people. We implore the kidnappers to spare the lives of the remaining hostages. Like Jim, they are innocents. They have no control over American government policy in Iraq, Syria or anywhere in the world,” Diane Foley said in a post on the Free James Foley Facebook page.
IS militants released a video showing a masked man beheading James Foley, who was taken prisoner in northwest Syria in November 2012, on Tuesday. The video was posted on YouTube.
James Foley was killed because US President Barack Obama had ordered airstrikes against IS positions in northern Iraq, the journalist’s executioner said in the video. IS also claimed to be holding another American journalist, Steven Sotloff, who appears at the end of the video, and said his life depended on Obama’s next move.
White House National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said the administration had seen the video but had not yet confirmed its authenticity.
IS is a radical Sunni group that has been active in Syria, but started launching attacks in northern and western Iraq in June.
Later that month, the radicals announced that they established a caliphate on the territory they control. In August, after Iraq asked the international community for help, the United States started launching air strikes against IS positions in the north of the country. The strikes targeted militants advancing on Mount Sinjar, the Mosul Dam and Kurdish capital Irbil.
IS militants threatened to attack US targets in a YouTube video released Monday, in which they warned that they would “drown all of you [Americans] in blood” and would attack them “in any place” should US airstrikes kill any of its members.