A grisly video purporting to show the nine jihadists involved in the Paris terrorist attacks has been published by the “Islamic State.” It contains statements by nine men and images of several hostages being beheaded.
The French government declined to comment late Sunday after the video was uploaded to the web channel of the so-called “Islamic State” (IS). The UK also declined to comment on footage showing its Prime Minister David Cameron.
The footage showed attackers, identified as four Belgians, three French citizens and two Iraqis, wearing camouflage clothing at a desert location, apparently filmed before the November 13 attacks in Paris.
Speaking in French and in Arabic, the jihadists said their “message” was addressed to all countries taking part in the US-led coalition that has run airstrikes against IS in Syria and Iraq since September 2014.
A narrator’s voice in the video said: “These are the last messages of the nine lions of the caliphate who were mobilized from their lairs to make a whole country, France, get down on its knees.”
A picture of British Prime Minister David Cameron was accompanied by the words in English: “Whoever stands in the ranks of kufr [unbelievers] will be a target of our swords.”
The video contains footage of the of the three-pronged Paris attacks as well as security operations by French special forces during the massacre.
Several of the nine are shown beheading hostages, a tactic often used by IS.
Fugitives remain at large
On November 13, nine attackers split into three groups and attacked a number of cafes, a rock concert at the Bataclan concert hall and the area around France’s national stadium during a France-Germany soccer match, killing 130 people.
Authorities have identified seven of the jihadists killed during the attacks. Two remain unidentified because they carried documents that were assumed to be forgeries of Syrian passports.
Arrest warrants remain for at least four suspected accomplices including Salah Abdeslam, who fled from France to Belgium a day after the attacks.
Liberties debate over emergency law
On Friday, French President Francois Hollande said he would ask parliament to extend the country’s state of emergency declared after the November 13 attacks by three months.
However, France’s highest administrative court, the Conseil d’Etat, will examine a request from the Human Rights League on Tuesday to end the measure.
Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve told France 5 television late on Sunday that the state of emergency needed to be extended.
“As long as we think that there is an imminent [terrorist] threat, we need the state of emergency,” he said. “I hope the state of emergency will have the shortest duration possible but at the same time that it will be in place long enough to ensure the French people are protected.”