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Islamic State Claims It Beheaded Russian Intel Officer in Syria

A fighter of the Islamic State holds an ISIS flag and a weapon on a street in the city of Mosul. Reuters

As the Russian military paraded through the streets of Moscow and across the country, the Islamic State* released a new video purporting to show the execution of a captured Russian intelligence officer in Syria, the SITE monitoring group reported on May 9.

In the Russian-language video, released via the islamist group’s media outlet Furat Media, the Islamic State claimed successes against Russian forces fighting in Syria. Then the video showed a man identified by SITE as Russian colonel Evgeny Petrenko being beheaded by an Islamic State fighter.

“This idiot believed the promises of his state not to abandon him if he was captured," the man said before he was beheaded, the Reuters news agency reported. The video also showed images of war-torn Syria and said the damage was caused by Russian bombs.

The Russian Defense Ministry later denied the report, insisting all Russian servicemen in Syria are alive and accounted for. According to official figures, Russia has lost 30 men fighting in Syria since it intervened in the conflict at the end of September 2015.

*The Islamic State is a terrorist organization banned in Russia

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