Less than 24 hours after the deadline for the payment of ransom to save the life of two Japanese hostages held captive by the ISIS expired, we have reports coming in which say that one of the hostages has been killed. According to Russia Today, a video released by several Jehadi websites show Kenji Goto, one of the Japanese hostages, claiming that his companion, identified as Haruna Yukawa, had been executed by the ISIS.
According to CNN, Kenji Goto is shown holding a picture of what he claims is the beheaded body of his fellow captive in the newly released video. According to Kenji Goto, the ISIS no longer wants a ransom to secure his release, and has named a female suicide bomber who is in a prison in Jordan to be released in lieu of him.
In the message to the world, Goto blames Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe for his fellow captive’s death. He has also named Sajida al-Rishawi, an alleged attempted suicide bomber, as the person to be released if the Japanese government wishes to seek his release.
Sajida is believed to be part of an attack on a Jordan hotel back in 2005 and has been in prison ever since. She had detonated her bomb which did not explode. While she had previously confessed to her crime, in a later court appearance, she retracted her confession. She is still undergoing re-trial after she appealed against a death penalty sentence handed over to her a lower court
Yoshihide Suga, a Japanese government spokesman, has reacted to the latest development and said that his countrymen are outraged by the atrocity by the ISIS.
“This is an outrageous and unacceptable act,” Suga said. “We strongly demand the prompt release of the remaining Mr. Kenji Goto, without harm.”
Earlier this week, the Islamic State posted a video that showed the two Japanese man in orange jumpsuits on their knees. They were accompanied by a masked man with a knife. In the video, they demanded a ransom of $200 million if the Japanese government wishes to secure the release of the two men. They gave 72 hours to the Japanese government to decide the fate of the captives. Incidentally, $200 million is the same amount that Japan had promised to pay to the U.S. -led coalition currently battling the Islamic State in the region.
Earlier, the Japanese Prime Minister had reiterated that they had no plans to pay a ransom to the Islamic State. However, he added that efforts would be taken to secure the release of the two men. Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga had earlier said that the government is doing all it can to secure the release of the men.
The Japanese government is now verifying the authenticity of the video.
[Image Via AP Photo/ The Star]