The mother of an American journalist being held by ISIS militants threatening to kill him has broken her silence with a public plea directly to the group’s leader.
Shirley Sotloff, the mother of 31-year-old freelance journalist Steven Sotloff, pleaded with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the group’s leader and self-proclaimed caliph, in a video which was broadcast on Al Arabiya TV, according to Time.
“As a mother, I ask your justice to be merciful and not punish my son for matters he has no control over,” Shirley says in the video. “I want what every mother wants: to live to see her children’s children. I plead with you to grant me this.”
One year ago, Steven Sotloff was kidnapped by militants after crossing into Syria, but his family had kept the news of his captivity secret after being told by ISIS that the group would kill him if his captivity was made public, according to the New York Times.
However, Steven’s mother Shirley took the case public after ISIS beheaded journalist James Foley and released a video of the murder online. At the end of the video, another journalist is shown kneeling while the executioner issues a statement threatening the life of the kneeling captive. That captive is believed to be Steven Sotloff, according to the Times.
You can see the video here:
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