Is­lamic State be­heads Ja­panese jour­nal­ist

Post-Tribune - - Post-Tribune Local -

TOKYO — Ja­pan con­demned with out­rage and hor­ror on Sun­day an on­line video that pur­ported to show an Is­lamic State group mil­i­tant be­head­ing Ja­panese jour­nal­ist Kenji Goto. The video posted on mil­i­tant web­sites late Satur­day Mid­dle East time ended days of ne­go­ti­a­tions to save the man and height­ened fears for the life of a Jor­da­nian fighter pi­lot also held hostage. “I feel in­dig­na­tion over this immoral and heinous act of ter­ror­ism,” Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe told re­porters af­ter con­ven­ing an emer­gency Cabi­net meet­ing. “When I think of the grief of his fam­ily, I am left speech­less,” he said. “The gov­ern­ment has been do­ing its ut­most in re­spond­ing to win his re­lease, and we are filled with deep re­gret.” He vowed that Ja­pan will not give in to ter­ror­ism and will con­tinue to pro­vide hu­man­i­tar­ian aid to coun­tries fight­ing the Is­lamic State ex­trem­ists. The White House re­leased a state­ment in which Pres­i­dent Barack Obama also con­demned “the heinous mur­der” and praised Goto’s re­port­ing, say­ing he “coura­geously sought to con­vey the plight of the Syr­ian peo­ple to the out­side world.” Obama ap­plauded Ja­pan’s “stead­fast com­mit­ment to ad­vanc­ing peace and pros­per­ity in the Mid­dle East and glob­ally, in­clud­ing its gen­er­ous as­sis­tance for in­no­cent peo­ple af­fected by the con­flicts in the re­gion.” “I was hop­ing Kenji would come back alive to thank ev­ery­one who had sup­ported him,” Goto’s brother Ju­nichi told Ja­panese public broad­caster NHK TV. “I am filled with sad­ness he couldn’t do it.” Goto’s mother, Junko Ishido, told NHK TV her son’s death showed he was a kind, gen­tle man, try­ing to save an­other hostage. That hostage, Haruna Yukawa, was shown as pur­port­edly killed in an ear­lier video. The fates of Goto, a 47-year-old free­lance jour­nal­ist, and the Jor­da­nian pi­lot, Lt. Muath Kaseas­beh, had been linked by mil­i­tants, but Satur­day’s video made no men­tion of the air­man. Jor­dan’s gov­ern­ment spokesman de­clined com­ment.

| AP

This im­age made from a video re­leased by Is­lamic State mil­i­tants on Satur­day shows Ja­panese jour­nal­ist Kenji Goto

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