The video is of the aftermath of the purported beheading and the victim is not visibly recognizable. The video’s authenticity has not been confirmed by the United States or other authorities.
Kassig, who is 26, had converted to Islam while in captivity and went by the name Abdul Rahman Kassig. He first went to the region as a solider with the United States. When he made his return to the region, he went as a medical worker. He felt compelled to aid victims of the wars.
Upon returning to civilian life, he performed aid work inside Syria where he eventually was captured. He has been held for more than one year.
Last month, Kassig’s life had been threatened by the IS in a video showing the beheading of Alan Henning an aid worker from Britain.
Kassig’s family just a week following the release of that video released one asking that his captors show mercy and let him go.
Paula, Kassig’s mother, spoke to her son on the video. She said they were proud of him and the work he had due to help the people of Syria.
The family noted they had released the video on Islam’s Eid al-Adah, or its Festival of Sacrifice the time Muslims slaughtered sheep, goats, cattle and lambs then distribute the meat to poor families.
Kassig was born in Indiana. He founded a non-governmental organization that aided Syrians that were fleeing the country’s civil war.
From 2012, Kassig had been delivering medical supplies and food both in and out of Syria and providing trauma training and care, said family members.
However, on October 1 of 2013, he was stopped and detained while en route to Deir Ezzor in the eastern part of Syria while carrying out one of his organization’s projects in the country, said his family.