WASHINGTON -- The United States said Wednesday that a video showing the beheading of a second U.S. journalist by Islamist militants is authentic. Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) extremists on Tuesday released the video showing freelance reporter Steven Sotloff's beheading, two weeks after the emergence of a video showing the killing of journalist James Foley.
Sotloff, a 31-year-old Miami-area native who freelanced for TIME and Foreign Policy magazines, vanished a year ago in Syria. Last week, Sotloff's mother, Shirley Sotloff, pleaded with his captors for mercy, saying in a video that her son was "an innocent journalist" and "an honorable man" who "has always tried to help the weak." Barak Barfi, a spokesman for the Sotloff family, said Tuesday they were grieving after having seen the video. The White House announced the verification on Wednesday. "The U.S. Intelligence Community has analyzed the recently released video showing U.S. citizen Steven Sotloff and has reached the judgment that it is authentic," National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin said.
- The Associated Press