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Islamic State Militants Appear to Behead American Photojournalist in Graphic Video


• Video titled "A Message to America"• Militants threaten to behead another journalist• White House releases statement


A new video posted online Tuesday purportedly shows Islamic State militants beheading an American journalist.

The nearly five minute video, titled “A Message to America,” depicts a man believed to be missing photojournalist James Foley being beheaded by a militant.

Image source: Screen grab Image source: Screen grab via Circa

The video opens with a message from the Islamic State, attacking President Barack Obama for recently directing airstrikes against the terror group.

"Obama authorizes military operations against the Islamic State effectively placing America upon a slippery slope towards a new war front against Muslims," the video said.

Then the shot pans over to Foley, who speaks into the camera.

“I call on my friends, family and loved ones to rise up against my real killers: the U.S. government,” Foley said in the video.

The 40-year-old is then beheaded by the masked militant. A graphic image of his decapitated head is shown sitting on his body.

At the conclusion of the video, an image of journalist Steven Sotloff is shown.

"The life of this American citizen, Obama, depends on your next decision," a voice said.

Image source: Screen grab Image source: Screen grab

The graphic footage was posted to YouTube, but later removed for violating community standards. 

Two people close to Foley told BuzzFeed that the man in the video appears to be Foley, who went missing in Syria more than a year ago.

The White House released a statement Tuesday evening saying they are working to determine the authenticity of the video.

"If genuine, we are appalled by the brutal murder of an innocent American journalist and we express our deepest condolences to his family and friends," National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said. "We will provide more information when it is available."

This story has been updated. Last update was at 6:20 p.m. ET.

Follow Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) on Twitter

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