The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria known as ISIS for short has released showing four men being burnt alive by the group.
Issued by the militant group‘s media arm and claiming to be filmed in Anbar province, the footage shows four men apparently from Iraq‘s popular resistance forces (militia), “confessing” individually to the camera.
The men are then strung up by their hands and feet to a wooden frame, before a fire is lit beneath them and they are burned to death.
Isis has entitled the video with a line from the Koran, roughly translated as “Punish them with the same harm they have caused you”, and experts said it came in direct response to videos showing similar atrocities circulated by Iraq‘s Shia fighters.
Last week, a video circulated on social media showed the Shia militia leader Abu Azrael torturing and killing a Sunni fighter, accused of Isis allegiance, by burning him alive over an open pit.
In the early stages of Isis’s new video, the four prisoners are shown as they are made to watch that footage.
While it was impossible to independently verify the authenticity of Monday‘s video, experts said that in the Iraqi context it appeared to be “an act of vengeance”.
Dr Andreas Krieg, an expert on the Middle East from King‘s College‘s Department of Defence Studies, told The Independent that the new video was unlike previous Isis releases designed to “terrorise a global audience and attract fanatics”.
He said that Shia militias, often with the support of Iran and employed by the Iraqi government, have been committing atrocities “of the same scale as Isis” since 2003.
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