The French President today condemned the apparent beheading of a French mountain climber at the hands of Algerian militants, who pledge their allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in a new video.
The video, which appeared online today, shows a man who appears to be 55-year-old Nice native Herve Gourdel kneeling in front of several armed militants as a statement is made by one of them in Arabic. Near the end of the nearly 5-minute video, Gourdel is pushed over and held down, at which point the video cuts out. When it returns, he appears to have been killed.
Before Gourdel’s death, the militant says he and his comrades will be “closer to Allah by killing this filthy Frenchman in defense of Allah’s religion," and then addresses ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, saying, “we are with you… here are your soldiers fighting those you fight and making peace with those you make peace with.”
Hours after the video's release, French President Francois Hollande spoke at the United Nations General Assembly and said France is "going through a tragedy following an assassination of one of our compatriots."
"But France will never give in to blackmail, to pressure, to barbaric acts," he said. "Quite to the contrary, France knows what is expected... The fight against terrorism will be pursued and accelerated as much as necessary with the respect for law".