Shalom Life | September 26, 2014

Al Jazeera Retracts Article Questioning Journalists' Executions

The Arab-language network has removed an article which suggests the U.S. 'faked' the videos depicting the murders of James Foley and Steven Sotloff

By: Daniel Koren

Published: September 9th, 2014 in News » World

Al Jazeera Retracts Article Questioning Journalists' Executions

The world continues to mourn the deaths of slain American journalists James Foley and American/Israeli Steven Sotloff, a week after a video depicting the latter's brutal execution demonstrated to the world once again the inhumane, deplorable actions of the radical Islamist group known as ISIS.

Reports continue to emerge regarding the details surrounding Sotloff's death, with a spokesman for his family claiming the White House could have done more to help him, and that 'moderate' Syrian rebels had sold him to ISIS for a mere $25 - $50k.

Days before these details were revealed, Qatar-owned Arab-language publication and television network, Al-Jazeera, the largest such network in the Arab world, published an article on its website Thursday which questioned the authenticity of the respective videos which depict the beheadings of Foley and Sotloff, by, the U.S. alleges, 23-year-old British rapper turned ISIS fighter, Abdel-Majed Abdel Bary.

Days later, Al-Jazeera retracted the article.

"Out of consideration for the feelings of the families of the victims, whose sorrow it shares, Al-Jazeera has pulled a report on doubts cast on US social media over the criminal decapitations of journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff. This report was incorrect," the network said in an official statement.

The article in question, written in Arabic, brandished the headline: "Were Foley and Sotloff really executed?" and claimed that activists "around the world have been voicing doubts that could almost confirm that the two videos were fake."

The article was published a week after the White House confirmed the authenticity of the video showing Sotloff's murder. It went on to say that the videos were 'faked' so that the United States could further justify their military attack against the Islamic State.

The video depicting the 31-year-old Sotloff's execution was unleashed to the world on Tuesday, two weeks after a similar video depicting Foley's death was posted online.

In retracting the offensive article, Al-Jazeera stated its "condemnation of this heinous crime," adding that they support "the freedom of journalists and their protection from harm anywhere in the world."

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