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MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) - 21/08/2014
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(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) Reporters Without Borders (RWB) on Wednesday said it is appalled by yesterday's release of a video that shows kidnapped US journalist James Foley being beheaded in Syria by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

A masked man dressed in black is seen in the video cutting the throat of a man wearing the same kind of orange jumpsuit as detainees in Guantanamo.

The man in black said Foley was being executed in revenge for the recent US air strikes on Islamic State positions in Iraq, according to a RWB statement.

The White House said the US intelligence agencies were trying to verify the video's authenticity as quickly as possible.

In the same video, Islamic State threatens to execute US journalist Steven Sotloff, who was abducted in Syria in August 2013, if President Obama does not end the US air strikes in Iraq.

'If the authenticity of this video claiming responsibility for James Foley's murder is confirmed, Islamic State would seem to be pushing its brutal treatment of hostages to the extreme,' the statement quoted RWB Secretary-General Christophe Deloie as saying.

'Foley did not work for the US government. He was an experienced international reporter whose sole interest was to report the news, not represent his nation,' Deloire said.

'We express our heartfelt condolences to his family, his mother, his father, who we know, and his friends. And we pay tribute to a man who helped us to provide support to the family of one of his friends, a photographer killed in Libya,' he added.

A veteran reporter, Foley, 40, was kidnapped near the town of Taftanaz, north Syria, on November 22, 2012.

He covered the conflict in Libya in 2011 before going to Syria to cover the uprising against the Assad regime for the US news site GlobalPost, the French news agency AFP and other media.

His is the first execution of a foreign journalist to be claimed by the ISIL which has killed Syrian citizen-journalists in recent months.

A total of 39 professional journalists (12 of them foreigners) have been killed in connection with their work in Syria since the start of the conflict in March 2011, and 122 Syrian citizen-journalists have been killed, the statement added.


Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)

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