The Islamic State or IS has been known to keep a huge number of hostages from different nationalities often using them to threaten many nations who are moving against them. The IS, or more commonly known as ISIS, have been known to record their executions and threats and now, they have turned their attention to Japan.
In a video posted last Tuesday on the internet, two Japanese men clad in orange jumpsuits were shown to be kneeling in a barren landscape as a masked man covered in black stood over them while holding a knife.
The masked man threatened to kill the two hostages unless Japan is able to pay $200 million within 72 hours. This is all because of the support Japan is giving to the U.S.-led coalition who is currently fighting the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.
The man directly aimed a statement at the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, saying: “Although you are more than 8,500 kilometers away from the Islamic State, you willingly volunteered to take part in this crusade.”
Abe is currently visiting the Middle East and in a conference held in Jerusalem, the Japanese PM had said that the international community should deal with the terrorists without ever giving into their threats.
He had also ordered Japanese officials to do their best in trying to save the two men who were identified as Haruna Yukawa and freelance journalist, Kenji Goto Jogo.
There is still no news whether Japan will pay the $200 million ransom.
Haruno Yukawa was reportedly captured in Syria while traveling with a band of rebel fighters. He is said to have come to the Middle East in search of a purpose after losing his wife and his business.
The other hostage, Jogo, on the other hand is a journalist who has reported for a number of Japanese news organizations.
ISIS had first publicized their execution when they had brutally beheaded American journalist, James Foley. This was soon followed by the execution of a number of people like Steven Sotloff who was another American journalist, British taxi driver Alan Henning and U.S. Aid worker Peter Kassig.
The militant group had taken over various territories in eastern Syria and Western Iraq. The Islamic State is known for its brutal tactics including mass killings, beheadings and execution of people they deem as ‘unworthy.’