“We have not identified the individual responsible on the video but from what we've seen it looks increasingly likely that it is a British citizen. Now this is deeply shocking,” Cameron told reporters on Wednesday.
James Foley was kidnapped in Syria at Thanksgiving in 2012 while working for the GlobalPost agency. In the video entitled 'A message to the US', the 40-year-old journalist denounces his country of birth with a knife to his neck through a speech presumably written by his captors – the Islamic State (IS, formerly known as ISIS) militants, who posted the video on YouTube.
At the end of the film, another US journalist who disappeared in August last year, Steven Joel Sotloff is paraded on camera as Foley’s killer states: “The life of this American citizen, Obama, depends on your next decision.”
The authenticity of the video was confirmed by the White House on Wednesday morning.
“We have reached the judgment that this video is authentic,” National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said.
Before Cameron made his statements, British media widely identified the speaker in the Islamic State video as speaking with a British accent.
The Daily Mail, Telegraph and Guardian all recognized the masked militant’s accent to be southern English, and intelligence agencies are reportedly attempting to ascertain the identity of the man.