The group calling itself the Islamic State (also ISIS or ISIL) has released a video purporting to show the execution of American journalist Steven Sotloff, according to the Site Intelligence Group.
Sotloff is the second American journalist brutally murdered by ISIS in less than two weeks. On Aug. 20, the group released a video showing the execution of James Foley, during which they also promised to execute Sotloff if the U.S. did not cease airstrikes against the group in Iraq.
The video of Sotloff, which was posted by Site, was entitled, “A Second Message To America.”
Based on a portion of the footage that was posted by Site and seen by Business Insider, it begins with footage of President Barack Obama speaking about the airstrikes the U.S. launched against Islamic State last month. It goes on to show Sotloff being held at knifepoint in an orange jumpsuit and behing forced to deliver a statement, a similar procedure for Foley in the video of his execution.
White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters Tuesday afternoon he was not immediately “in a position to determine the authenticity of the video.” He said the White House’s thoughts and prayers were with Sotloff’s family.
“If the video is genuine, we are sickened,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said. She said the intelligence community would work quickly to determine the video’s authenticity.
In the video released Tuesday by ISIS — entitled “A Second Message to America — Sotloff appears dressed in an orange jumpsuit before he is executed by an ISIS member.
Sotloff was kidnapped by militants upon crossing into Syria a little more than a year ago. He had been freelancing for Time and Foreign Policy magazines. Last week, his mother made an emotional plea to his captors and the Islamic State’s self-proclaimed caliph, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
U.S. officials have said that Sotloff and Foley were among fewer than 10 Westerners being held hostage by the group. When asked again on Tuesday, Psaki said “a few” U.S. citizens were being held by ISIS.
This is a breaking news story and will be updated as we learn more information.
NOW WATCH: Briefing videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.