National Press Club

National Press Club statement calls Sotloff execution 'abhorrent'

September 3, 2014 | By Rachel Oswald | rachelm.oswald@gmail.com

The National Press Club condemns the execution of U.S. journalist Steven Sotloff, who was being held by the terrorist organization Islamist State.

Sotloff was a freelancer for Foreign Policy and Time magazine, among other outlets. He is thought to have been kidnapped in Syria by Islamic State fighters in August 2013. Sotloff was last seen in a video released Aug. 19 of the execution of American freelancer James Foley at the hands of an Islamic State militant.

In a new video released on Tuesday by Islamic State, the executioner claims to be the same man who murdered Foley.

"We condemn in the strongest terms the execution of Steven Sotloff. He was a civilian and his deliberate targeting, abduction and murder, like that of James Foley, is abhorrent and a violation of international norms," said NPC President Myron Belkind. "We extend our deepest condolences to the Sotloff family. And we urge that decisive actions be taken to bring those responsible for Steven Sotloff and James Foley's deaths to justice."

An estimated 20 other journalists, many of them Syrians, are reported to be missing in the country and some of them are possibly being held by Islamic State, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.

The National Press Club, located in Washington, D.C., and founded in 1908, is the world's leading professional organization for journalists. Through its Press Freedom Committee, the Club speaks out on behalf of press freedom and transparency worldwide.

Contact: Rachel Oswald, vice chair, NPC Press Freedom Committee, at rachelm.oswald@gmail.com or 202-486-9173.