SHAFAQNA – ISIL Takfiri terrorists have released a new video allegedly showing the beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians kidnapped in Libya following an earlier announcement of the terror act in an issue of their magazine, Dabiq.
The five-minute video, released on Sunday, shows the handcuffed hostages dressed in orange jumpsuits, similar to previous ISIL victims, kneeling down along the seaside in the Libyan capital of Tripoli.
The terrorist group says in the footage that the killings are revenge for “Muslim women persecuted by Coptic crusaders in Egypt.”
“Safety for you crusaders is something you can only wish for,” one of the militants says while brandishing a knife.
Following the incident, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi offered his condolences to the Egyptian people, called for urgent security talks and announced a seven-day mourning period in the African country.
Barbarism no religion
Egypt’s Al-Azhar University also censured ISIL’s “barbaric” killing of the Egyptian Christians.
“Al-Azhar received the news of the execution of a group of innocent Egyptians with great sorrow and grief,” the top Sunni Muslim body said in a statement.
“Al-Azhar stresses that such barbaric action has nothing to do with any religion or human values.”
Moreover, Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox church says it is “confident” that those who the Egyptian Copts in Libya will be punished.
“The Orthodox church … is confident its homeland would not rest until the evil perpetrators get their fair retribution for their wicked crime,” the Coptic church said in a statement on its Facebook page.
The ISIL had earlier published the photos of the 21 Egyptian workers, claiming that the pictures were taken moments before their decapitation.
The workers, whose photos were published in the latest online edition of Dabiq, were reportedly abducted in the Libyan coastal city of Sirte in two attacks in December last year and January.
Following the event, Egypt’s foreign ministry warned Egyptians not to travel to Libya, advising those already living in the country to avoid areas of high tension. A large number of Egyptians, many of them construction laborers, are currently working in Libya.
ISIL video releases
ISIL has so far released several similar videos from Iraq showing execution of its captives from different countries, including the United States, Britain, and Japan.
In its previous video, a Jordanian pilot, captured by ISIL militants when his plane came down in northern Syria during a mission against the terrorist group, was seen while being burned inside a cage.
The footage raised Jordanian authorities’ anger and ultimately led to a step-up in Amman’s airstrikes against ISIL positions in the region.
The new video could trigger a strong response against the Takfiris from the government in Cairo.
Egypt to avenge killings
Speaking on national television following the release of the video, President Sisi has stated that Egypt reserves right to respond in a “suitable way” to the killings.
“Egypt reserves the right to respond in a suitable way and time to punish these murderers,” Sisi said in a televised speech.