Less than a day after the Islamic State released a brutal video of Jordanian pilot being burnt alive, Jordan has executed two al Qaeda jihadists, one of them an Iraqi female bomber who was sought by the ISIS in return for the hostages.
Al Qaeda’s Iraqi female bomber Sajida al-Rishawi, who was involved in triple hotel bombings in Amman in 2005, was reportedly executed by the Jordanian government on Wednesday.
Jordan had a day earlier pledged a quick and ‘earth-shattering’ response to the barbaric act of gruesome killing of the Jordanian pilot Moaz al-Kasasbeh, who was captured by the ISIS in December last year.
Reacting to the execution of Sajida al-Rishawi, the Islamic State has threatened that it will retort by invading Japan, SITE Intel Group’s head Rita Katz said.
The ISIS also said that Sajida’s killing would not be considered “victory for Jordan” as the pilot killed several women.
According to Jordanian State TV, the pilot was executed last month as the video was dated Jan 3. The barbaric video was published on IS-liked Twitter accounts by ISIS’ media arm Al-Furqan group. According to SITE Intel Group’s head Rita Katz, the 22-minute long video titled “Healing of the Believers’ Chests” is the most barbaric video yet in which the pilot has been shown being burnt alive in a cage.
In spite of having killed the pilot, the ISIS was trying to get the female Iraqi bomber released in a prisoner swap. However, the hostage negotiations fell apart as Jordan wanted the ISIS to give the proof of the pilot being alive.
In what appears to be a new ISIS strategy of pressurising the nations, the extremists used the captured hostages to convey their demands, in this case – of releasing a female Iraqi bomber who is jailed in Jordan.
Jordan is one of the anti-ISIS coalition members that has carried out air strikes against the ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
The US-led anti-ISIS coalition has been launching anti-jihadist airstrikes in Iraq and Syria since September and the Jordanian pilot’s plane is the first coalition warplane to have crashed.
King Abdullah II, who has portrayed the campaign against the extremists as a battle over values, was in Washington on a previously scheduled trip. He added a stop at the White House with President Barack Obama.
The monarch broadcast a speech on Jordanian TV on Tuesday evening, confirming the pilot’s death “with sorrow and anger,” and urging his countrymen to unite.
“It’s the duty of all of us to stand united and show the real values of Jordanians in the face of these hardships,” Abdullah said. The official Petra news agency said he would be cutting short his Washington trip.