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Jan 24, 2015 4:00 PM

Obama says terror group has killed hostage; others doubtful

The Associated Press

RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany (AP) President Barack Obama is condemning what he calls "the brutal murder" of a Japanese hostage by the Islamic State group.

Obama's statement doesn't say how the United States knows that Haruna Yukawa is dead, and the Japanese government is trying to verify an online video that purports to show his death.

That online posting was quickly deleted Saturday, and militants on a website affiliated with the terrorist group questioned its authenticity.

Tokyo had no immediate comment on Obama's statement.

Obama says in his statement that the United States will stand "shoulder to shoulder" with Japan. He's also calling for the immediate release of a second Japanese hostage held by the militants.

The statement was issued in Germany while Obama stopped briefly on his way to India.


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