Japanese Hostage Haruna Yukawa Beheaded, Second Hostage Stipulates New IS Demand in Video


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.

"The video was made in a different style than the other beheading videos," says SITE Director Rita Katz, "seemingly rushed and even lacking the usual attribution to al-Furqan Media Foundation, a primary media arm of the group. SITE can, however, confirm that the video is an official ISIS release, because of our in-depth research and understanding of the online infrastructure of the Islamic State and other jihadist groups."

According to the 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 up on pressing their government.

He also states that 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:

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.

"This is not the first time that the Islamic State has changed their demands," says Katz. "Before killing James Foley, the group allegedly added an option of releasing Muslim prisoners to what started as monetary demands."

You can view the video here:

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