The Islamic State has threatened to execute a 26-year-old American woman if it does not receive $6.6 million in ransom, according to an ABC News report.
The woman’s family asked that she not be identified, but said she was doing humanitarian relief work in Syria when she went missing last year.
The demand comes just one week after the terrorist group beheaded American journalist James Foley and spread video of the horrific execution on social media.
ABC reported that the Islamic State is also demanding the release of MIT-trained neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui, who was convicted in 2010 of trying to kill two U.S. officials. The group said that if it receives the ransom and Siddiqui is released, it will spare the American woman’s life.
Mauri Saalakhan of the Peace and Justice Foundation said the Siddiqui family was horrified by the request, and does not want to be associated with the Islamic State.
“They made it very clear, this is not the way, these are not the conditions under which we want our loved ones released,” Saalakhan said. “Nor did they want harm to come to anyone else’s loved one in the name of Aafia. … They conveyed that message loud and clear.”
More via ABC:
Each of the three known surviving American hostages in [the Islamic State’s] hands have been threatened with death since Foley’s execution, sources have told ABC News. In the video that showed Foley’s death, a masked militant said that [Steven] Sotloff’s fate rested in President Obama’s hands – an apparent demand that the U.S. stop airstrikes against [Islamic State] targets in Iraq.
The day after Foley’s execution video emerged online, the U.S. military announced it had continued bombing runs against [the Islamic State] in Iraq and overnight. The New York Times reported President Obama has approved surveillance flights over Syria, what the paper called a potential precursor to airstrikes there.
Watch the complete ABC News report below: