Jund al-Khilafa, an ISIS-aligned militant group in Algeria, released a video Wednesday allegedly showing the beheading of Hervé Gourdel, a French tourist it held captive and threatened to kill if French President Francois Hollande didn’t withdraw from the U.S.-led coalition of airstrikes in Iraq. The jihadists reportedly released the video on Twitter, according to the SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors terrorist chatter.
The 4-minute, 46-second video, titled “A Message with Blood to the French Government,” features footage of Hollande. Gourdel is shown on his knees speaking as men wrapped in headscarves and carrying guns stand behind him. SITE said the footage doesn’t show the actual beheading, but another shot shows Gourdel’s severed head resting on his lap before the men hold up his head.
The video is similar to the beheadings of U.S. journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff and British aid worker David Cawthorne Haines at the hands of ISIS. SITE said Jund al-Khilafa has taken cues from the group, now known as the Islamic State.
“As the Islamic State has instructed its supporters all over the world to execute attacks, the beheading of this French hostage may not be the last demonstration of this nature,” said SITE Director Rita Katz.