The Islamic State has released a brutal execution video, in which it used a child fighter to behead a Syrian army captain near the captured ancient city of Palmyra.
In the video, a boy, named only as the “cub of the Caliphate,” wearing camouflage and a black scarf around his head, stands behind a man — allegedly a captain in the Syrian army — who is kneeling on the ground in the pose seen frequently before an execution begins.
An adult jihadist stands by to oversee the child — whose age is unknown — as he carries out the gruesome crime which involves positioning the man on his stomach, beheading him from behind with a small knife, then placing his severed head on top of his lifeless body.
— Rana Harbi (@RanaHarbi) July 16, 2015
In the video, the ISIS fighter who was seen standing next to the boy declared the group’s greater goal of taking over Israel and Rome. According to a translation from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, he said, “Our goal is not only Palmyra nor Homs or Damascus but our goal in to conquer Bayt al-Maqdes (Jerusalem) and Rome, God willing.”
In the video, Islamic State fighters claim that the senior army officer was captured near Hir Palace, located in the western countryside of Homs, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. He reportedly had fled with his soldiers from Palmyra.
The London-based monitoring group also noted that the clip is believed to be the first beheading by a child filmed by ISIS, which has previously used minors to execute captives by shooting them.
The original source of the video has been taken down, but there are uncensored photos from the video here.