Peter Kassig (left) was abducted by ISIS in 2013 and eventually killed.
An Islamic State leader tied to the beheading of American aid worker Peter Kassig has been killed in an airstrike, the US military said Monday.
The US-led coalition on Sunday targeted Abu al-Umarayn and several other ISIS members with the strike in a desert area of southeastern Syria, said Col. Sean Ryan.
The ISIS commander posed an “immediate threat” to coalition forces in the area and was “involved in the killing” of 26-year-old Kassig, as well as linked to the executions of several other prisoners, Ryan said in a statement.
Umarayn is the first ISIS member to be publicly identified as having been involved in Kassig’s execution, although it’s unclear exactly what role he played.
Kassig, a former US Army Ranger medic from Indianapolis, worked as a humanitarian worker and was abducted by ISIS in 2013 as he delivered food to refugees in eastern Syria.
Formerly a Methodist, he converted to Islam while in captivity and changed his name to Abdul-Rahman Kassig. His family pleaded for his safe return in a video message to ISIS.
On Nov. 16, 2014, ISIS posted a video showing bloodthirsty beheader “Jihadi John” standing over a severed head, and the White House confirmed Kassig had been killed.
“Jihadi John,” whose real name was Mohammed Emwazi, was killed in a US-led coalition airstrike in November 2015.