ISIS Claim Beheading of American Journalist

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James Foley is one of an estimated 20 journalists who went missing in Syria.

An American photojournalist is claimed to have been beheaded by militants of the terrorist group Isis in a video posted online.

 

James Foley, 40-year-old freelancer, was reporting on the civil war in Syria and went missing in the northern area of the country in November 2012.

 

The journalist from Rochester, New Hampshire, is one of an estimated 20 journalists who went missing in Syria, believed to be held captive by militants, according to the US Committee to Protect Journalists.

 

Philip Balboni, chief executive of US media company GlobalPost for whom James Foley worked, said: “We have been informed that the FBI is in the process of evaluating the video posted by the Islamic State to determine if it is authentic. We ask for your prayers for Jim and his family.”

 

If the authenticity of the video is confirmed, the beheading will be the first incident in which Isis militants have killed an American since 2011 when the conflict in Syria first began.

 

In the video posted on YouTube, entitled ‘A Message to America’, the militants claimed that Mr Foley’s death was a revenge killing as a result of the ongoing US air strikes in Iraq.

 

The killing of James Foley has been condemned by members of the Muslim community as “senseless and barbaric”.

 

Mr Mohammed Shafiq, Chief Executive of the Ramadhan Foundation, said: “Our immediate thoughts are with the family of Mr. Foley and his friends. This brutal killing reminds us of the dangerous environments in which journalists operate around the world and we call on all people to respect the freedom of the press.

 

“If this barbaric killing was not enough then the allegations that the beheading was carried out by a British citizen is deeply worrying for our nation. As Muslims we reject terrorism and the evil ISIS, they do not act in our name and we abhor anyone who supports them.

 

“The real concern for the Ramadhan Foundation is if these hardened terrorists return to the UK and put our country at risk from further terrorist attacks. We stand ready to support the police and intelligence agencies in their work to defeat terrorism and protect our nation.”

 

The UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said today that not only is Isis a threat to Syria and Iraq but also to our own national security.

 

He deemed the apparent beheading of Mr Foley, “one more example in a catalogue of brutality” by the militant group, who have killed scores of civilians and caused hundreds of thousands to be displaced in Syria.

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