ISIS has beheaded the fifth Westerner.
The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria group released a video Sunday showing a masked militant keeping close watch on the severed head of a man identified as Peter Kassig, a former U.S. Army Ranger-turned- air worker who was kidnapped last year while delivering relief supplies in Syria.
United States President Barack Obama confirmed the beheading of Peter Kassig following a U.S. review of the video, which also reveals the mass beheadings of a dozen Syrian soldiers. Peter Kassig, a 26-year-old who served in the U.S. Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment and former relief group Special Emergency Response and Assistance after being medically discharged was “taken away from us in an act of pure evil,” President Obama says in a statement. Peter Kassig’s parents Ed and Paula said in a statement from Indianapolis that, despite being “heartbroken,” they are “incredibly proud” of their son’s humanitarian work.
Unlike previous beheading videos, the footage released on Sunday does not portray the decapitation moment or the moments before. The black-clad militant, whose British accent was distorted in the video revealed the name of the U.S. citizen and sent another message to U.S. President Barack Obama accusing him of maintaining military troops in Iraq. The location of the beheading has been identified as Dabiq, where the terrorist group believes a battle between Muslims and their enemies will occur.
Burhan Agha, a Syrian who worked with Kassigin Lebanon told The Associated Press via a telephone interview from Switzerland, where he is currently seeking asylum that he would “apologize to each American, one by one” if he could. ISIS still has other captives: British photojournalist John Cantlie and a 26-year-old American woman captured in 2013 while working for aid groups, whose identity remains hidden for fear of her safety.