Tallinn (Estonia) : President Barack Obama said on Wednesday that the United States would not be intimidated by Islamic State militants after the beheading of a second American journalist and would build a coalition to “degrade and destroy” the group.
Obama still did not give a timeline for deciding on a strategy to go after the extremist group’s operations in Syria. “It’ll take time to roll them back,” the president said at a news conference here.His comments came after he said the United States had verified the authenticity of a video released on Tuesday showing the beheading of freelance reporter Steven Sotloff, two weeks after journalist James Foley was similarly killed.
Obama vowed the US would not forget the “terrible crime against these two fine young men.” “Our reach is long and justice will be served,” he said.
In the Sotloff video, a masked militant warns Obama that as long as US airstrikes against the militant group continue, “our knife will continue to strike the necks of your people.”
Obama responded that he will continue to fight the militant threat and the “barbaric and ultimately empty vision” it represents. ‘UK hostage the next’
An Islamic State militant in the second video message has warned that a British hostage would be next. He seemed to be the same man who beheaded Sotloff and Foley.
In a video showing the British hostage kneeling at knifepoint, the militant says: “I’m back, Obama, and I’m back because of your arrogant foreign policy towards the Islamic State … despite our serious warnings.”
British Prime Minister David Cameron condemned the beheading of the second US reporter and threatening to kill a British captive as “despicable”.
“This is a despicable and barbaric murder,” Cameron said. He held a Cobra emergency meeting on Wednesday to “review these latest developments” and said the government would do all it could to protect its people from the jihadists.
British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said such threats were not going to change his country’s overall strategy. Britain would deal with IS on the basis of the wider threat that they pose to the public, he said.
Hours after the IS released the ‘authentic’ video depicting the beheading of Sotloff, the US said it would send 350 more troops to Iraq to protect its facilities and personnel in Baghdad but they would not engage in combat.