Another western-born jihadi who held western hostages before they were executed by ISIS has been identified as a British man, who once traveled to Gaza with notorious anti-Israel MP George Galloway.
Alexander Kotey, a 32-year-old convert to Islam, is the son of a Greek Cypriot and Ghanaian immigrants who lived in West London before moving to Syria to join the so-called "Islamic State." His identity was revealed in a joint expose by the Washington Post and Buzzfeed News.
Kotey attended the same "Al Manaar" mosque as Mohammed Emwazi - the infamous ISIS executioner better known by his media moniker "Jihadi John" - who was killed in a US drone strike late last year. According to one former associate, Kotey was often among a group of extremists who regularly manned a stand outside the mosque, "to openly preach and argue about what they thought was their cause or ideology."
According to the report, Kotey and Emwazi were both part of a group of British ISIS jailers, known due to their distinctive British accents as "The Beatles", who tortured and brutalized the western hostages in their custody. While European hostages were all eventually released in return for ransoms, the British and American hostages were all executed by Emwazi in gruesome, videotaped beheadings. Emwazi also executed two Japanese hostages captured later by the Islamist terror group.
While there were several groups of jailers who held the hostages at one point or another, the British contingent were known to be the most brutal. At times, they staged mock executions or forced the prisoners to fight each other for their amusement, according to testimonies from former hostages.
Kotey's involvement in the group was confirmed by unnamed US intelligence sources, as well as sources on the ground in Syria.
Prior to leaving the UK Kotey was a key member of a Muslim gang known as the London Boys, which became known to police for advocating violence, particularly after several gang members were involved in terrorist plots.
In 2009, Kotey left the UK along with Reza Afsharzadegan - a leader of the London Boys - as part of a convoy to support Hamas in Gaza led by then-MP George Galloway. The so-called "Viva Palestina" initiative was comprised of 110 vehicles, and all the cash and aid it raised was handed directly to Gaza's Islamist rulers. Today, Galloway is standing for election as Mayor of London.
Nine convoy participants were arrested by British security forces on terrorism charges before they were able to depart, though all were later released without charge.
British jihadis - many of them born in the UK - have figured significantly among the group's western recruits, both in terms of numbers and their relatively high profiles due to their value as propaganda tools.
Earlier this year, an ISIS execution video featured yet another British-accented jihadist, who analysts believe has already been identified by intelligence agencies.