The Isis jihadist group has released a new video showing the execution of five hostages in an apparent threat to the West.
In propaganda footage thought to have been issued by the militants’ media arm in Nineveh province, Iraq, a French-speaking militant hails recent attacks in Europe and promises more to come, most notably in Spain.
The video shows the long-haired, apparently French militant and four others each shooting a prisoner in the back of a head. The executions are purported to take place in the ruins of a building destroyed in coalition air strikes.
It comes as Isis warned in the latest edition of its Arabic newsletter, al-Naba, of new attacks in Britain which would “turn the hair of young children white”, according to a Site Intel translation.
This has been interpreted as an apocalyptic prophesy, part of Isis’s doomsday narrative which claims the end of the world will come with a final battle between it and the rest of the world.
Saying the Paris attacks which killed 130 people on 13 November were “not the last message the soldiers of the Caliphate signed with blood”, the group claims the UK will suffer “the lion’s share” of attacks in Europe in future.
French intelligence officials will be analysing the new video in an attempt to identify the masked militant, whose speech includes specific threats to Toledo and Cordoba and warns Spain will “pay dearly” for ending Muslim rule of Andalucía in the 15th century.
Estimates last year suggested more than 1,500 French nationals have travelled to join the terrorist group, including at least 220 women tempted by its recruitment network.
A week ago, Isis’s main media centre in Raqqa released a 17-minute propaganda film featuring the Paris attackers, and which also threatened attacks in Britain.
And the EU announced the formation of a new combined intelligence agency to pool anti-terror efforts from across the continent, warning Isis was planning “large-scale” terror attacks and focusing primarily on European targets.
Security analysts said recent Isis media output would be monitored by UK security forces, but such propaganda “doesn’t change anything in particular” for the British terror threat level.