ISIS Burns Captive Jordanian Pilot Alive

ISIS releases video showing captured pilot burned alive inside a metal cage; Jordanian state TV claims he was actually executed a month ago.

Contact Editor
Ari Yashar, | updated: 19:46

Relatives of captive Jordanian pilot Maaz al-Kassasbeh, including his wife (C), hold poste
Relatives of captive Jordanian pilot Maaz al-Kassasbeh, including his wife (C), hold poste
Reuters

The Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist group released a video on Tuesday purportedly showing the burning alive of a Jordanian pilot it had captured in December.

The video released online showed images of a man purported to be Maaz al-Kassasbeh engulfed in flames inside a metal cage.  

Kassasbeh was captured on December 24 after his F-16 jet crashed while on a mission over northern Syria as part of the US-led coalition campaign against the jihadists.

The highly produced, 22-minute video shows footage of Kassasbeh sitting at a table discussing coalition operations against ISIS, with flags from the various Western and Arab countries in the alliance projected in the background.

It then shows Kassasbeh dressed in an orange jumpsuit and surrounded by armed and masked ISIS fighters in camouflage. It cuts to him standing inside the cage and apparently doused in petrol before he is burned alive in a gruesome ritual, as one terrorist ignites a stream of flammable liquid which leads into his cage.

The Sunni Muslim terrorist group had threatened to kill Kassasbeh unless Jordan handed over a jailed Iraqi female suicide bomber.

The release of the video of the pilot's murder came days after ISIS beheaded a second Japanese hostage within a week.

ISIS had vowed to kill the second Japanese man, Kenji Goto, and Kassasbeh by sunset on January 29 unless Amman handed over Iraqi jihadist and would-be suicide bomber Sajida al-Rishawi, who is on death row in Jordan.

Jordan demanded proof that Kassasbeh was still alive before releasing the terrorist. In the end it never got word back before the deadline, and on Saturday ISIS released a video showing Goto being beheaded.

There have already been suggestions that Kassasbeh may have been killed weeks before this latest video was released, as suspicions were already high over whether he was in fact alive due to ISIS's refusal to hand over a simple proof of life.

According to Jordanian state TV, the 26-year-old pilot was actually killed exactly a month ago, on January 3.

Just a week before that another Japanese captive, Haruna Yukawa, was likewise beheaded by ISIS. Goto had entered Syria as part of a humanitarian effort to document the situation of residents, and also to try and locate the captive Yukawa and free him.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan and Bahrain are taking part in the coalition air strikes in Syria. Australia, Belgium, Britain, Canada, Denmark, France and the Netherlands are participating in Iraq.