“Islamic State” have published a video that is said to depict the murder of a British aid convoy volunteer Alan Henning, three weeks after warning that he would be the next to die.
If the video is found to be authentic, Henning will be the fourth western hostage to have been killed by the group, following the filmed beheadings of US journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, and Scottish aid worker David Haines.
Here is a transcript of the video which we publish purely for our readers’ interest:
Alan Henning: I am Alan Henning. Because of our Parliament’s decision to attack the Islamic State, I as a member of the British public will now pay the price for that decision.
The killer: The blood of David Haines was on your hands David Cameron. Alan Henning will also be slaughtered but his blood is on the hands of the British parliament.
The killer then strikes at Henning’s throat and the video fades to black before showing disturbing images. The video then cuts to footage of another hostage on his knees in an orange jump suit. The screen bears the text: Peter Edward Kasig (American).
The killer: Obama you have started your aerial bombardment in Sham which keeps on striking our people so it is only right we keep on striking the necks of your people.
The latest crime comes after the UK launched air strikes against ISIS, joining the US and its Arab allies – Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE – which had been targeting the group for several days.
Shortly before the Ministry of Defence announced that the RAF had attacked two ISIS targets, the Foreign Office arranged for Henning’s wife Barbara to make a televised appeal for his release. His death, if confirmed, will be a devastating blow to her and to their two teenage children.
Intelligence agencies on both side of the Atlantic are studying the video, which was released on the eve of the Islamic festival of Eid al-Adha, in an attempt to verify its authenticity.
On Friday night, a Foreign Office spokesperson said: “We are aware of the video and are working urgently to verify the contents. If true, this is a further disgusting murder. We are offering the family every support possible; they ask to be left alone at this time.”
The prime minister, David Cameron, said: “The brutal murder of Alan Henning by Isil shows just how barbaric and repulsive these terrorists are. My thoughts and prayers tonight are with Alan’s wife Barbara, their children and all those who loved him.
“Alan had gone to Syria to help get aid to people of all faiths in their hour of need. The fact that he was taken hostage when trying to help others and now murdered demonstrates that there are no limits to the depravity of these Isil terrorists.
“We will do all we can to hunt down these murderers and bring them to justice.”