MOSCOW, August 20 (RIA Novosti) — The FBI currently believes that a video showing the beheading of US journalist James Foley by Islamic State (IS) militants is authentic, the GlobalPost news portal reported Wednesday.
"Formal authentication has yet to be completed," the GlobalPost said.
IS militants released a video on Tuesday showing a masked man beheading James Foley, who was taken prisoner in northwest Syria in November 2012. The video was posted on YouTube.
The IS militant featured in the video, entitled "A Message to America," said Foley was killed because US President Barack Obama had ordered airstrikes against IS positions in northern Iraq. Foley's family confirmed his death.
The Syrian Journalists Union vigorously condemned the execution, and the union's head, Elias Murad, told RIA Novosti, the organization was "sorry that journalists became subjects of torture regardless of their nationality."
The IS also claims to be holding another American journalist, Steven Sotloff, who appears at the end of the video, and said his life depends on Obama’s next move.
The Islamic State 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 had established an Islamic caliphate. 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 the Kurdish capital of 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.