08/20/2014 09:35 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

White House Knew Of Islamic State's Threat To Execute James Foley

The White House knew of threats by the Islamic State, the militant group formerly known as ISIS, to kill journalist James Foley, ABC and the AP report.

A YouTube video released Tuesday entitled "A Message to #America (from the #IslamicState)" purportedly shows Foley's execution. Foley went missing in November 2012 while reporting in northern Syria.

U.S. officials say they believe the journalist in the video is Foley, and Foley's mother confirmed it was her son in the video in a statement on a Facebook page called "Free James Foley."

journalist james foley
In this May 27, 2011 file photo American Journalist James Foley, of Rochester, N.H., poses for a photo in Boston. (AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)

Foley's mother said she had "never been prouder" of her son in a statement released Tuesday:

We have never been prouder of our son Jim. He gave his life trying to expose the world to the suffering of the Syrian people.

We implore the kidnappers to spare the lives of the remaining hostages. Like Jim, they are innocents. They have no control over American government policy in Iraq, Syria or anywhere in the world.

We thank Jim for all the joy he gave us. He was an extraordinary son, brother, journalist and person. Please respect our privacy in the days ahead as we mourn and cherish Jim.

According to the AP, President Barack Obama was briefed about the video on Air Force One on Tuesday as he flew from Washington to resume his vacation on the resort island of Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts.

The video released by IS purportedly also shows American journalist Steven Soloff. A militant in the video warns Sotloff could be the next captive killed, depending on Obama's "next decision."



James Foley