The Islamic State’s Aleppo “province” has released a video congratulating its brothers in the Sinai “province” for downing a Russian airliner on October 31. The video doesn’t prove that the Islamic State was responsible, but Western officials say it is increasingly likely that the jihadists placed a bomb on board the jet.
In the new video, the Islamic State says the plane was brought down in retaliation for Russia’s bombing campaign in Syria. The video features a number of people who discuss the alleged effects of Russia’s attacks. The Islamic State threatens that Russia will be defeated in Syria just as the Soviet Union was in Afghanistan.
The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the Russian airliner crash on at least three previous occasions.
Within hours of the crash, the Sinai “province” issued a statement saying that “[s]oldiers of the caliphate were able to down a Russian airplane.” The Islamic State’s Al Bayan radio later released an audio version of the statement. On November 4, the Islamic State again said it was responsible, defiantly arguing in an audio message that it doesn’t have to prove how it destroyed the airliner. The group added, however, that it would release evidence to support its claim at some point in the future. The new video does not include such evidence.
The Islamic State has disseminated its previous claims of responsibility in multiple languages.
Below are a number of screenshots from the video.
The video shows Russian President Vladimir Putin meeting with Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad and Iranian president Hassan Rouhani:
The Islamic State portrays the US as being allied with Russia when it comes to Syria:
The video commemorates the Sinai “province’s” pledge of allegiance to Abu Bakr al Baghdadi in November 2014:
Images of aircraft owned by Metrojet, which operated the downed Russian airliner, are shown:
The video reenacts the downing of the aircraft in the Sinai:
One of the Islamic State’s “witnesses,” who discusses the impact of Russia’s bombing campaign in Syria: