ISIS Claims Jordanian Airstrike Killed 26 Year Old U.S. Hostage Kayla Mueller

ISIS is claiming that 26 year old US hostage Kayla Mueller was killed Friday during when a Jordan fighter plane bombed the building where she was being held near Raqqa. However, it could not be confirmed and the Islamic State has provided no proof of their allegations. Kayla Mueller was kidnapped in August 2013 when she was leaving a hospital run by Spanish Doctors Without Borders in the Syrian city of Aleppo.

The Islamic State claimed that a 26-year-old Arizona woman taken hostage by the group in Syria was killed Friday when a Jordanian fighter plane bombed a building where she was being held.

The claim could not be immediately verified, nor was it clear that Jordanian planes had bombed that location, described as being near Raqqa, the group’s de facto capital. The group released photos showing rubble of a building it claimed had been struck in airstrikes, but no images of the hostage, Kayla Mueller.

“The criminal Crusader coalition aircraft bombarded a site outside the city of ar-Raqqah today at noon while the people were performing the Friday prayer,” the Islamic State said in a statement, according to SITE Intelligence Group, which tracks online postings by Islamist militant groups. “The air assaults were continuous on the same location for more than an hour.”

The statement included Mueller’s phone numbers and other personal information.

The White House has “not at this time seen any evidence that corroborates” the claim.

The White House has “not at this time seen any evidence that corroborates” the claim, said Bernadette Meehan, the spokeswoman for President Barack Obama’s National Security Council. The statement included photos allegedly of the bombed site but no images of Mueller.

We are obviously deeply concerned by these reports,” Meehan said.

Jordan has been launching increased airstrikes against ISIS in response to a video released this week that shows a captive Jordanian pilot being burned to death in a cage.

CBS News national security correspondent David Martin reports that a U.S. military officer said the building that ISIS claims the U.S. hostage was in “was a weapons storage facility, not anything that was assessed to be a hostage holding area.”

“We would not strike a facility that was a known or possible hostage facility,” the officer said.

UPDATE I: Jordan: Islamic State claim U.S. hostage killed in airstrike ‘propaganda’.

UPDATE II: Family of U.S. Hostage of Islamic State Says Hopeful She is Still Alive.

The parents of an American humanitarian worker held hostage by Islamic State since August 2013 said on Friday they are hopeful she is still alive, after the group said she was killed in a bombing by Jordanian fighter jets.

Carl and Marsha Mueller, the parents of Kayla Jean Mueller, asked the Islamic State group to contact them privately, according to a statement released by a family representative.

In a message directed to “those in positions of responsibility for holding Kayla,” they said: “You told us that you treated Kayla as your guest, as your guest her safety and well-being remains your responsibility.”

Video Released Online Showing the Beheading Death of Japanese Hostage Kenji Goto by ISIS Terrorists

ISIS savages behead a second Japanese hostage …

A video has been released online that shows 47 year old Kenji Goto being beheaded by an ISIS terrorist with a British accent. The latest beheading video comes less than a week after another Japanese hostage, Haruna Yukawa, was executed.  Japanese officials had been working with Jordan to secure the release of Goto and a Jordanian pilot, Moaz al-Kasasbeh, who was shot down over Syria in December; however, earlier on Saturday negotiations had become deadlocked.

ISIS_Goto beheading

The video comes less than a week after news of the beheading of another Japanese man, Haruna Yukawa.

Mr Goto, 47, is a well-known freelance journalist and film-maker who went to Syria in October, reportedly to try to secure Mr Yukawa’s release.

Japan said it was trying to authenticate the video.

The video, which bears the same symbols as previous IS videos, shows a militant with a British accent beheading Mr Goto.

Japanese government spokesman Yoshihide Suga said Japan was “outraged” by the video, adding that the cabinet was meeting to decide a response to it.

Rupert Wingfield-Hayes: “The Japanese PM has taken a very tough line”

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Japan “would not give in to terrorism”.

He said Japan would work with the international community to bring those responsible for Kenji Goto’s apparent murder to justice.

Japan Times – Islamic State group purportedly releases Goto execution video:

The video — the authenticity of which cannot be confirmed by The Japan Times — shows a masked man speaking in British-accented English standing beside Goto kneeling down on the ground, wearing an orange jumpsuit.

“To the Japanese government. You, like your foolish allies in the satanic coalition, have yet to understand that we, by Allah’s grace, are a large Islamic caliphate with authority and power and an entire army thirsty for your blood,” the man said, brandishing a knife.

“Abe, because of your decision to take part in an unwinnable war, this knife will not only slaughter Kenji but will carry on and also cause carnage wherever your people are found. So let the nightmare for Japan begin.”

Then the man applied the knife to the throat of Goto and the video switched to a still image of what appears to be the beheaded body of Goto.

ISIS Claims They Have Killed One of Two Japanese Hostages … VIDEO Shows Hostage Kenji Goto Holding Pic of Beheaded Body of the Second Hostage, Haruna Yukawa

SICK, THESE SAVAGES HAVE DONE IT AGAIN …

The Islamic State, ISIS, has reportedly released a new video Saturday claiming one of the two Japanese captives had been beheaded.  In the video, Japanese freelance journalist Kenji Goto holds up a photo that shows the dead body of the second hostage, Haruna Yukawa. The video has yet to be verified and there is some question as to the videos authenticity as it is different from past ISIS ones released. However, with ISIS’s record of beheading innocents, why would these savages put forth a fake?  ISIS is now issuing a new demand for the second Japanese hostage, to al Qaeda female prisoner in Jordan, , Sajida Mubarak Atrous al-Rishawi.”

ISIS_Japanese hostage

Japanese Times

A purported ISIS video posted online today claims the terror group has beheaded one of two Japanese hostages and will execute the second unless an al Qaeda female prisoner is freed in Jordan.

Neither U.S. nor Japanese officials were able to immediately authenticate the video, which did not contain many of the high production techniques seen in earlier ISIS videos nor the typical branding for the terror group.

The video shows a still picture of Japanese television reporter Kenji Goto holding a photo of the beheaded body of Haruna Kuwana.

Clearly reading a message written for him, the voice says ISIS no longer is demanding a $200 million ransom but will free him if the female prisoner is released.

“They no longer want money, so you don’t need to worry about funding terrorists,” the voice says. “They are just demanding the release of their imprisoned sister, Sajida al-Rishawi. It is simple, You give them Sajida and I will be released.”

UPDATE I: Japanese hostage feared killed as government says will not give in to terrorism.

In an audio tape sent to the family of one of the hostages, Kenji Goto, he appeals for help and say that the other, his friend Haruna Yukawa, has been killed.

As he speaks, Mr Goto is shown in a still photograph, in which he holds up another photograph showing what seems to be Mr Yukawa’s decapitated body with his head lying on his back – a now standard method used by Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant to display its victims.

“You have seen the photo of my cellmate Haruna slaughtered in the land of the Islamic Caliphate,” he says, addressing the Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe.

“You were warned. You were given a deadline and so my captors acted upon their words.

UPDATE II: White House has released a statement condemning the alleged action of the Islamic State group.

“We have seen the video purporting to show that Japanese citizen Haruna Yukawa has been murdered by the terrorist group ISIL,” Patrick Ventrell, a U.S. National Security Council representative, said in the statement. “The intelligence community is working to confirm its authenticity. The United States strongly condemns ISIL’s actions, and we call for the immediate release of all the remaining hostages. The United States is fully supportive of Japan in this matter. We stand in solidarity with Japan and are coordinating closely.”

ISIS Threatens to Kill Two Japanese Hostages (Kenji Goto Jogo & Haruna Yukawa) Unless They Receive $200M (VIDEO)

ISIS THREATENS TO KILL MORE INNOCENT HOSTAGES …

The terrorist group ISIS has released an online video on Tuesday purporting to show two Japanese captives and threatening to kill the two hostages unless it received $200 million in ransom.  In the video, a black-clad figure, presumed to be Jihadi John, with a knife, standing over over the two kneeling men wearing orange clothing, demanding that the Japanese public have 72 hours to pressure their government to stop its “foolish” support for the U.S.-led coalition waging a military campaign against Islamic State.  The $200 million ransom is the same amount that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged on January 17 in a visit to Cairo in non-military assistance for countries battling Islamic State.

CNN – ISIS threatens to kill 2 Japanese hostages unless Tokyo pays $200 million:

Two Japanese hostages, one demand from ISIS: Hand over $200 million, or else.

The else being that the pair will meet the same gruesome fate as other captives held by the terrorist group, others who were shown in ISIS videos kneeling in orange jumpsuits in front of masked, black-clad men — just like the Japanese hostages identified as Kenji Goto Jogo and Haruna Yukawa — shortly before being beheaded.

A masked man in the latest video gives the Japanese government a choice to pay $200 million — the same amount of money Prime Minister Shinzo Abe recently pledged for those “contending” with ISIS — to free the Japanese men. That deal holds for 72 hours, which would seem to mean sometime Friday since the video appeared on social media Tuesday.

ISIS Demands $200M In Ransom In Next 72 Hours For Japanese Hostages.

The video identifies the hostages, who are wearing orange jumpsuits, as Kenji Goto Jogo and Haruna Yukawa. The Japanese Foreign Ministry’s anti-terrorism section has seen the video and analysts were assessing it, a ministry official said. Japanese media identified the first man only a Kenji Goto.

In August, a Japanese citizen believed to be Yukawa, a private military company operator in his early 40s, was kidnapped in Syria after going there to train with militants, according to a post on a blog. Pictures on his Facebook page show him in Iraq and Syria in July. One video on his page showed him holding a Kalashnikov assault rifle with the caption: “Syria war in Aleppo 2014.”

Goto is a respected Japanese freelance journalist who went to report on Syria’s civil war last year and knew of Yukawa. “I’m in Syria for reporting,” he wrote in an email to an Associated Press journalist in October. “I hope I can convey the atmosphere from where I am and share it.”

Second Hostage Situation in Paris France … Hostage Taker Identified as Amedi Coulibaly … “You Know Who I Am” … the Individual Suspected of Fatal Shooting a Police Officer (Update: Two Hostages Dead)

TERROR IS PARIS …

There is now a second terrorist hostage situation in Paris, France that is connected with the terror attack at Charlie Hebdo that left 12 dead.  ABC News is reporting that heavily armed SWAT teams moved into Porte de Vincennes after the second hostage situation developed at a kosher grocery, involving a gunman and multiple hostages. It is now being reported that there are 5 hostages inside the kosher deli.

A police official says the man who has taken at least five people hostage in a kosher market in Paris appears linked to the newsroom massacre earlier this week that left 12 people dead.

The official, who was not authorized to speak about the situation, said the man opened fire in the market Friday and declared “you know who I am.”

Paris police released a photo of Amedy Coulibaly, 32, as a suspect in the killing Thursday of a policewoman, and the official named him as the man holed up in the market. He said some hostages have been gravely wounded.

He said a second suspect, a woman named Hayet Boumddiene, is the gunman’s accomplice

paris terror-suspects-Amedi Coulibaly

CNN: Charlie Hebdo attack: 2 intense standoffs in France.

Two intense standoffs with gunmen were underway in and around Paris early Friday afternoon — one involving the two brothers wanted in the Charlie Hebdo massacre and the other a hostage situation at a kosher grocery store near eastern Paris’ Porte de Vincennes.

UPDATE I: The Guardian – Charlie Hebdo attack: new hostage situation at Paris grocery – live updates

More details are emerging about Amedy Coulibaly who is believed to be holding up six people hostage at a kosher supermarket in eastern Paris, after being named as suspect in the killing of a policewoman on Thursday.

He is 33 and from Juvisy-sur-Orge in Ile-de-France. According to Le Monde, Coulibaly and Cherif Kouachi were two of the most committed followers of convicted terrorist Djamel Beghal . Telephone conversations reveal that the pair visited Beghal’s home in Murat in the south of France. Hayat Boumeddiene, 26, has been Coulibaly’s partner since 2010 and lived in his home while he was serving a prison sentence, Le Monde said.

UPDATE II: More trouble in France as armed man kills 2 hostages at kosher deli in Paris.

An armed man exchanging in gunfire with police has taken five hostages and killed two of them at a kosher deli in the Porte de Vincennes area of Paris, various media reported Friday morning.

Fox News and other media reported that two have been killed.

Agence France-Presse reported that a gunman has opened fire and taken at least one hostage. Fox News, meanwhile, said a total of five women and children were being held by the gunman.

Two dead when armed man takes hostages at standoff at kosher deli in eastern Paris

The gunman, reportedly armed with a Kalashnikov rifle, has killed at least two people at a grocery in Porte de Vincennes, according to reports Friday. The armed man, named as 32-year-old Amedy Coulibaly, has taken five people hostage and is linked to Thursday’s murder of a Paris police officer and is an ‘associate’ of terror brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi, who carried out Wednesday’s terror attack on Charlie Hebdo.

Charlie Hebdo Suspected Terrorists (Said & Cherif Kouachi) Surrounded by French Authorities Inside Warehouse with Female Hostage … “Want to Die as Martyrs”(Update: Kouachi KILLED!)

HOSTAGE SITUATION IN FRANCE FOLLOWING CHARLIE HEBDO MASSACRE …

Said and Cherif Kouachi, the two terrorist brothers responsible for the savage massacre at Charlie Hebdo in Paris, France that left twelve dead are reported to be barricaded in a warehouse with one hostage. The Kouachi brothers stormed into a warehouse near Charles de Gaulle airport and forced the workers out, saying “We don’t kill civilians.” French law enforcement officers have surrounded a building about 40 kilometers (25 miles) northeast in the town Dammartin-en-Goele.

One lawmaker said they told negotiators they “want to die as martyrs.”

paris terror-suspects-kouachi

The terrorist brothers suspected in the Charlie Hebdo massacre barricaded themselves inside a warehouse with a hostage Wednesday, just hours before a second gunman killed two and took multiple people hostage inside a Paris deli, French media reported.

It appears that the two hostage situations and the Thursday killing of a French police officer are all related.

“Armed and dangerous” brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi stormed into a printing company’s warehouse Friday after they led police on a chase through the Paris area, cops said. The two, accused of slaughtering 12 at the French magazine Wednesday, demanded the workers leave.

“Get out. We don’t kill civilians,” they said, according to Sky News.

At least 1,500 police officers and snipers surrounded the building and began phone negotinations with the Charlie Hebdo massacre suspects. The brothers told officials they “want to die as martyrs,” a French politician told the Telegraph.

The situation is tense and fluid  as the standoff continues between authorities mobilizing commando-style units capable of storming the single-story printing business in Dammartin-en-Goele and the terrorists who want to die as martyrs.

FOLLOW ON FRANCE 24.

WATCH LIVE EVENTS AT REUTERS

UPDATE I: The terrorist brother, Said and Cherif Kouachi, have been killed!!!

paris terror-suspects-kouachi_tweet

UPDATE II: Charlie Hebdo Suspects Killed, Market Shooter Dead.

Good riddance to bad rubbish. Hmm, they released the hostage prior to the siege. Looks like they wanted to garner public opinion that they are terrorist with a conscience.

Two brothers believed behind Wednesday’s attack on the offices of French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo were killed on Friday, Agence France Presse reported, culminating a dramatic day in which France was shaken by two simultaneous hostage crises.

Police cornered brothers Cherif and Said Kouachi on Friday inside a printing house in the town of Dammartin-en-Goele near Charles de Gaulle International Airport, where the suspects had been holed up since Friday morning.

A hostage taken by the brothers in Dammartin-en-Goele was released before the siege. An employee at the printing house who was hiding in the building’s cafeteria was freed by police after the raid. The Associated Press said the brothers told police negotiators they wanted to die as martyrs.

A government source told Reuters that the Kouachis were killed after stepping out of the building and opening fire. The brothers had a loaded M82 rocket launcher, two Kalashnikov assault rifles and two automatic pistols, according to Paris prosecutor Francois Molins.

Sydney Siege in Sydney, Australia: Hostages Held in Lindt Cafe (LIVE VIDEO) (Update: Seige Over, Two people Dead Along with an Islamist Gunman)

Multiple hostages have been held in a Sydney, Australia cafe by a gunman in what appears to be an Islamist-linked attack.

VIDEO – CNN: Hostage situation inside a Sydney cafe

Australian police locked down the center of the country’s biggest city on Monday after an armed man walked into a busy downtown Sydney cafe, took hostages and forced them to display an Islamic flag, igniting fears of a jihadist attack.

Police said they knew of one armed assailant involved in the incident at the Lindt chocolate cafe in the heart of Sydney’s financial district, but there could be more.

Australia_hostage

Click HERE for VIDEO

BBC:

A gunman is holding staff and customers hostage at a cafe in Sydney, Australia.

The Lindt cafe in the city centre is surrounded by armed police. Officers have made contact with the gunman.

Five people have been seen running from the building. It is not clear how many remain inside. A black Islamic flag has been displayed at the window.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott said it was “profoundly shocking” that people were being “held hostage by an armed person claiming political motivation”.

He was speaking after chairing a meeting of the national security committee in Canberra.

Earlier Mr Abbott said: “Australia is a peaceful, open and generous society – nothing should ever change that and that’s why I would urge all Australians today to go about their business as usual.”

Senior police officers say they are on a footing “consistent with a terrorist event”.

UPDATE I: ABC – Australia.

Key Points:

  • An armed offender is holding an “undisclosed number” of hostages inside the Lindt cafe in central Sydney, police say
  • Almost seven hours into the siege, three people were seen running out of the cafe. An hour later another two emerged
  • New South Wales Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn could not confirm how many people were being held hostage, but police believed it was fewer than 30
  • Police are working to determine the motivation of the offender and have moved to a footing consistent with a terrorism event
  • A black flag with white Arabic writing reading “There is no God but Allah” and “Mohammed is the messenger of God” was waved behind the hostages

UPDATE II: Five people flee from Sydney cafe amid hostage drama.

VIDEO – Watch ABC News 24 Live

UPDATE III: Australia’s Prime Minister Tony Abbott said the gunman was “claiming political motivation.”

Australia’s Prime Minister Tony Abbott said the gunman was “claiming political motivation” but after more than 15 hours had yet to declare the siege a terrorist event. However, police said they were “operating according to our counter-terrorism protocols” and NBC News analyst, ex-FBI-agent Don Borelli, told TODAY that the suspect appeared to be inspired by ISIS.

Chris Reason, a journalist with NBC News’ Australian partner Channel 7, said the hostage-taker was “forcing them to stand against windows, sometimes two hours at a time.” He added that the suspect seemed to be “getting extremely agitated” after the five hostages left.

Police would not confirm how many were still being held inside the Lindt cafe — where a black flag used by Islamist groups in the Middle East has been shown in the window.

UPDATE IV: Sydney siege: Gunman issued demands, threats.

UPDATE V: Sydney siege: Three dead after commandos storm cafe.

Two people died, along with an Islamist gunman, after commandos stormed a cafe in Sydney, Australia, to bring to an end a 16-hour siege.

Local media have named those who died as Lindt cafe manager Tori Johnson, 34 and lawyer Katrina Dawson, 38.

Four people were injured, including a policeman hit by shotgun pellets.

Central Sydney was put in lockdown as the gunman, identified as an Iranian refugee, seized dozens of hostages early on Monday.

The Lindt Chocolat Cafe is located in Martin Place, a busy shopping area in Sydney’s financial district.

The gunman, named as Man Haron Monis, forced some of the hostages to hold up a black Islamic banner at the window of the cafe.

American Photojournalist Luke Somers Held Hostage in Yemen Killed by al Qaeda During a Failed Rescue Operation

Thirty-three year old Luke Somers, the American photojournalist held hostage in Yemen, was killed by al-Qaeda terrorists during a failed rescue operation overnight. According to reports, at least 10 AQAP terrorists holding Somers were killed in the mission.  A South African teacher from the Relief group Gift of the Givers, Pierre Korkie, also being held by al Qaeda terrorists was killed. Outgoing Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said the attempt to free the captives was justified; “There were compelling reasons to believe Mr. Somers’ life was in imminent danger.”  Earlier this week,  a video was posted by al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) of Somers and threatened to kill him if unspecified demands were not met. Somers was kidnapped in Yemen in September 2013.

Luke Somers

Luke Somers

American hostage Luke Somers was killed in a rescue attempt by the U.S. and Yemen Saturday.

A Yemeni national security official told Fox News Somers was still alive, but badly injured when U.S. special operation forces reached him in the rescue mission.

He had been injured by Al Qaeda militants during the raid. He would later die being transported to a U.S. Navy ship of Yemen.

Numerous AQAP terrorists holding the hostages captive were killed in the mission.

President Obama released a statement early Saturday morning condemning the “barbaric murder” of Somers by the Al Qaeda terrorists.

Obama said he ordered the rescue mission attempt Friday.

Obama, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Secretary of State John Kerry all expressed their condolences to Somers’ family.

Reuters – U.S., South African hostages in Yemen killed in rescue attempt:

Major General Ali al-Ahmadi, chief of the national security bureau in Yemen, said Somers was killed during the raid and other hostages held by the group had been taken to field hospitals, but gave no details about them or their condition.

Somers was removed from the scene but died later from a wound he suffered during the rescue attempt, a senior official in the Yemeni president’s office said.

Relief group Gift of the Givers said teacher Pierre Korkie was also killed.

Obama Administration Paid Ransom and Released 5 Top Gitmo Detainees for Army Deserter Bowe Bergdahl

I thought the United States did not pay ransoms to terrorists?

It turns out that the Obama administration did pay money to terrorists in an attempt to get the release of Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl. UNREAL. The Department of Defense did pay a ransom for the release of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl but the transaction’s Afghan middle man ran off with the cash. This goes against previous Pentagon statements in 2009 where they denied doing any such thing. LIARS!!!  The ransom payment also goes against President Obama’s strategy finical strategy in pressuring foreign governments, corporations and families of captives not to pay ransom. What are the odds we will hear Obama say, he just learned about this scandal too? But when that failed, Obama did the next worse thing … released 5 GITMO terrorists for a deserter.

The Department of Defense attempted to pay a ransom for the release of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl but the transaction’s Afghan intermediary ran off with the cash, according to a member of the House Armed Services Committee.

The claims directly contradict statements from the Pentagon, which has vehemently denied that it paid cash to a Taliban splinter group that captured Bergdahl in 2009. The administration in May released five-value Guantanamo Bay detainees in exchange for Bergdahl’s release.

Remember following the release of Bowe Bergdahl, FOX News reported that the Obama administration may have given the Taliban and Haqqani terrorists money as well as the five top Taliban prisoners? Watch the VIDEO below of the Catherine Herridge interview with Greta Van Susteran and On the Record.

VIDEO Hat Tip – The Gateway Pundit

The Washington Times:

The Pentagon is under fire for making a ransom payment to an Afghan earlier this year as part of a failed bid to win the release of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, according to U.S. officials.

Sgt. Bergdahl was released in May after nearly five years in captivity as part of a controversial exchange for five terrorists held at the U.S. military detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The ransom payment was first disclosed by Rep. Duncan Hunter in a Nov. 5 letter to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel. Mr. Hunter stated in the letter that Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) made the payment covertly as part of a release deal. But the money was stolen by the Afghan intermediary claiming to represent the Haqqani terrorist network.

“Given the significance of this matter, as well as the fact that Pentagon officials have denied that a payment was even considered — and you also said you were unaware of any such attempt — I ask you to immediately inquire with JSOC to determine the specific order of events,” said Mr. Hunter, California Republican and member of the House Armed Services Committee.

Mr. Hunter also asked Mr. Hagel whether ransom payments are being considered for other captives.

Disclosure of the ransom payment undermines a key financial element of President Obama’s strategy to counter the Islamic State — pressuring foreign governments, corporations and families of captives not to pay ransom. In a speech in September, David S. Cohen, Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said the Islamic State made $20 million this year in ransoming hostages.

ISIS Terrorists Claims They Have Beheaded American Hostage Peter Kassig

ISIS BEHEADS AMERICAN HOSTAGE PETER KASSIG.

ISIS appears to have done it again. In a VIDEO, ISIS terrorists claim to have beheaded American hostage Peter Kassig. That now makes the 5th Westerner that ISIS has brutally murdered. The 26 year old Peter Kassig, also known as Abdul-Rahman Kassig, as he converted to Islam, was an aid worker in Syria prior to his capture. Kassig was a U.S. soldier and returned to the Middle East  as a medical worker, feeling compelled to help victims of war. Kassig’s parents had previously asked for mercy for their some; however, as we all know … ISIS has no mercy.

Kassig was an Army veteran who served in the Iraq war before he was honorably discharged for medical reasons in 2007.

Kassig later became an emergency medical technician and volunteered as a medical assistant in border hospitals in Lebanon in 2012, treating Palestinian refugees and those fleeing from the Syrian conflict.

In the fall of 2012, Kassig founded an NGO called SERA, Special Emergency Response and Assistance, eventually moving its base of operations to Turkey, according to a family spokesman. From there Kassig “sourced and delivered food and medical supplies to the growing [refugee] camps on both sides of the Syrian border.” He also gave primary trauma care to children caught in the crossfire.

CNN:

Militants claim to have beheaded American hostage Peter Kassig in a video published to the Internet on Sunday, purportedly from terror group ISIS.
ISIS reportedly beheads Peter Kassig.

The video shows the aftermath of a beheading, in which the victim is not clearly recognizable. CNN has not been able to confirm the authenticity of the video nor the identity of the victim.

Kassig, 26, who converted to Islam in captivity, also went by the name Abdul-Rahman Kassig.

He went to the Middle East as a U.S. soldier and returned as a medical worker, feeling compelled to help victims of war.

He did aid work in Syria, where he was captured. He was held hostage for over a year.

Kassig’s parents, Ed and Paula Kassig, acknowledged the reports of their son’s death in a statement and said they would wait for government confirmation of their authenticity. They asked for privacy.

UPDATE I: Western Leaders React To Peter Kassig Beheading Video Posted By Islamic State.

Leaders of Australia and the U.K., as well as a representative of the U.S. National Security Council, have publicly denounced the contents of a video that allegedly shows members of the Islamic State militant group in Syria beheading Abdul-Rahman Kassig, an American aid worker who was born Peter Kassig. The militant group formerly known as either ISIL or ISIS purportedly posted the video online Sunday: It appears to show so-called Jihadi John, a militant responsible for previous hostage beheadings, holding Kassig’s head.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott denounced the footage at a press conference covered by the Guardian. Abbott would not comment on the video’s authenticity or whether he had seen any additional footage, saying only that the Islamic State group should be called a death cult.

British Prime Minister David Cameron posted on Twitter earlier Sunday, saying  he was horrified by what he called Kassig’s “cold-blooded murder”

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