PARIS: French President Francois Hollande today "resolutely" condemned the apparent execution of a Japanese hostage by the Islamic State (IS) group in a video released online.
Hollande said he "resolutely condemned the brutal murder of Japanese citizen Kenji Goto by Daesh," using an alternative acronym for the group, according to a statement from his office.
"France stands in solidarity with Japan in this new ordeal," Hollande said, adding that France and Japan would "continue to work together for peace in the Middle East and to eliminate terrorist groups."
The Islamic State group said yesterday it had beheaded Goto, a journalist, in the video, who is seen kneeling next to a standing masked man who speaks with a British accent and blames the Japanese government for his "slaughter".
The man, dressed head-to-toe in black with his face covered, appears to be the same IS militant who has featured in the group's previous execution videos.
Goto is the second Japanese hostage apparently murdered by the group in recent days, after IS claimed responsibility for the beheading of another Japanese man it had been holding, self-described contractor Haruna Yukawa.