(New York Times) The Japanese government expressed outrage at an image released Saturday that appeared to show the decapitated body of one of two Japanese hostages captured by Islamic State militants, and President Obama condemned what he called a “brutal murder.”
The kidnappers had threatened to kill the men if a Friday deadline passed for a $200 million ransom from Japan. Hours before Mr. Obama’s statement, the United States and Japanese governments said that they were working to authenticate the video containing the image.
SITE Intelligence, an organization that tracks jihadist propaganda, said that it believed it was authentic. But Al Furqan, a media arm of the Islamic State that has in the past posted videos of the group’s beheadings, had not released any video or message confirming the apparent killing of Haruna Yukawa, 42, by late Saturday.