Amman, Feb 3: Jordanian state television today said pilot Maaz al-Kassasbeh, whom the Islamic State group claimed to have burnt alive in a video posted online, was killed a month ago.
It said the captured airman had been killed by the group on January 3, before the jihadists offered to spare his life and free a Japanese journalist in return for the release of a female would-be suicide bomber on death row in Jordan.
The extremists had threatened to kill Kassasbeh unless Amman handed over Iraqi jihadist Sajida al-Rishawi. Jordan had insisted on proof that the pilot, captured on December 24 after his F-16 jet went down while on a mission over northern Syria, was alive before any exchange.
State television broadcast a picture of "martyr pilot Kassasbeh" with a black band across the screen accompanied by patriotic music.