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Jordan king vows 'severe response' to IS after pilot killing

AFP , Wednesday 4 Feb 2015
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Jordan's King Abdullah II vowed Wednesday a "severe" response to the Islamic State group after it burned alive a Jordanian fighter pilot captured in Syria.

"The blood of martyr Muath al-Kassasbeh will not be in vain and the response of Jordan and its army after what happened to our dear son will be severe," the king said in a statement released by the royal court.

Abdullah held talks with senior military and security officials Wednesday after cutting short a trip to Washington following IS's release of a video showing Kassasbeh's killing.

Information Minister Mohammad al-Momani told AFP Amman was "more determined than ever to fight the terrorist group Daesh," using an Arabic acronym for IS, after the brutal murder of its airman.

Jordan executed two Iraqi jihadists at dawn Wednesday, including would-be suicide bomber Sajida al-Rishawi, as it had promised to do if Kassasbeh were killed.

IS had offered to spare Kassasbeh's life and free Japanese journalist Kenji Goto -- who was later beheaded -- if she were released.

The video released Tuesday showing the pilot's immolation prompted global revulsion and vows of unwavering international efforts to combat the Sunni Muslim extremist group.

Jordan is one of several Arab spates to have joined a US-led coalition conducting airstrikes against IS in Syria and Iraq.

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