Scots hostage could be next victim of UK jihadist

The jihadist with what he calls his next victim. Picture: comp
The jihadist with what he calls his next victim. Picture: comp
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EXTREMISTS from the Islamic State have warned a Scot could be their next victim in a video showing a masked militant apparently beheading a US journalist.

The latest chilling footage appears to show a British jihadist murdering a man believed to be US journalist Steven Sotloff, a freelancer from Miami.

The killer is understood to be the same man who beheaded fellow journalist James Foley on camera last month.

At the end of the new video, the fanatic threatens the life of a third hostage seen kneeling in a Guantanamo Bay style orange jumpsuit.

The former security worker is believed to a Scot from the Dundee area who was abducted by IS forces while travelling to South Sudan and Syria to carry out aid work.

An official for an aid agency where he had worked described the footage as “sickening”.

The official said: “He was very caring, had a good sense of humour.

“He left the military and wanted to work for non-governmental organisations.

“Nobody deserves that. We were really hoping he would be released and it’s not looking very positive. And that’s really sickening.”

The Scot appeared at the end of the video where the masked extremist delived a message to President Barack Obama.

Dressed in black and carrying a short knife, he said: “I am back, Obama, and I am back because of your arrogant foreign policy towards the Islamic State, because of your insistence on continuing your bombings and . . . on Mosul Dam, despite our serious warnings.

“Just as your missiles continue to strike our people, our knife will continue to strike the necks of your people.”

Prime Minister David Cameron condemned the “barbaric” killing and announced he would chair an emergency meeting of Cobra today.

Mr Cameron said in a statement: “If verified, this is a despicable and barbaric murder.

“My thoughts and prayers are with Mr Sotloff’s family and friends as they deal with this appalling and tragic situation.

“As I have said consistently over the last few weeks, (IS) terrorists speak for no religion.

“They threaten Syrians, Iraqis, Americans and British people alike and make no distinction between Muslims, Christians or any other faith.

“We have already been working hard to keep British people safe and we will continue to do all we can to protect our country and our people from these barbaric terrorists.”

A Foreign Office spokesman said: “We are aware of a video which purports to be the murder of a US national and includes a threat to another hostage. We are urgently working to verify the authenticity of the video.”

A spokesman for Mr Sotloff’s family said they “know of this horrific tragedy and are grieving privately”.

The journalist was seized in Syria in August 2013 and had not been seen until the video of Mr Foley’s killing released by IS on August 20.