Former ISIL Hostage: Jordanian Pilot Still Alive
“Until I was freed from the ISIL jail, Kasasbeh was still alive,” Ibrahim al-Shimr, the goalkeeper of a Syrian football team who was in an ISIL jail in Raqqa, was quoted as saying by the Arabic-language channel of Russia Today on Thursday.
Al-Shimr who has been released from prison at the direct of ISIL leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdad made the remarks orignally in an interview with an Arabic-language media outlet affiliated to the Syrian dissidents.
“One month after the footages of the Jordanian pilot’s burning to ashes was released, I was freed from jail and Kasasbeh was alive at the time,” he added.
The ISIL released a video, purportedly showing al-Kasasbeh being burned alive. The Jordanian government had pleaded with ISIL to release the hostage in exchange for a captured terrorist.
The video itself, which was posted on social media appeared to have been a carefully staged production, shot from several angles, and sound tracked with religious hymns. It showed al-Kasasbeh being led out into a square in front of a squadron of masked men, before being placed in a cage. A rope lying outside the cage was then lit up, and the hostage was engulfed in flames. The execution was in contrast with the customary beheadings, practiced by the ISIL.
Al-Kasasbeh was captured after his plane crashed over an ISIL-controlled part of Syria, following a bombing mission on December 24, 2014.