Islamic State (IS)-linked Twitter accounts distributed a video in which Japanese hostage Kenji Goto Jogo stated that his fellow captive Haruna Yukawa was executed, and stipulated a new demand from the IS for his release.
The 2 minute, 52 second video was distributed on January 24, 2015, after the 72-hour deadline expired that was imposed by the IS for the Japanese government to pay a $200 million ransom for the hostages’ release. According to the latest video, Jogo’s message was received by his family and the Japanese government. A still image of Jogo appears with him holding a picture of a beheaded Yukawa. He speaks in English, blaming Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for Yukawa’s death, and telling his wife and family not to give him. He stated that the IS is now demanding the release of Sajida al-Rishawi, a female suicide bomber dispatched by al-Qaeda in Iraq to attack a hotel in Jordan in 2005.
He stated: “It is simple. You give them Sajida and I will be released. At the moment, it actually looks possible and our government are indeed a stone throw away. How? Our government representatives are ironically in Jordan, where their sister Sajida is held prisoner by the Jordanian regime.”
Following is a transcript of the video:
This message was received by the family of Kenji Goto Jogo and the government of Japan
[Voice attributed to Kenji Goto Jogo]
I am Kenji Goto Jogo. You have seen the photo of my cellmate Haruna slaughtered in the land of the Islamic Caliphate. You were warned. You were given a deadline and so my captives acted upon their words.
[Prime Minister Shinzo] Abe, you killed Haruna. You did not take the threats of my captors seriously and you did not act within the 72 hours.
Rinko, my beloved wife, I love you, and I miss my two daughters. Please don't let Abe do the same for my case. Don't give up. You along with our family, friends, and my colleagues in the independent press must continue to pressure our government. Their demand is easier. They are being fair. They no longer want money. So you don't need to worry about funding terrorists. 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. At the moment, it actually looks possible and our government are indeed a stone throw away. How? Our government representatives are ironically in Jordan, where their sister Sajida is held prisoner by the Jordanian regime.
Again, I would like to stress how easy it is to save my life. You bring them their sister from the Jordanian regime and I will be released immediately. Me for her. Rinko, these could be my last hours in this world and I may be a dead man speaking. Don't let these be my last words you ever hear. Don't let Abe also kill me.