Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri advised his Croatian counterpart Vesna Pusic on Wednesday that the authorities were nonetheless doing all they might to seek out and arrest the abductors, his ministry stated.
He said the Egyptian government “just like any other government, can not prevent abductions”.
Then on Wednesday, IS sympathizers circulated an image on social media that appeared to show Salopek’s beheaded body lying on desert sand with a black IS flag and a knife planted next to it. The picture or the information about his execution could not be officially verified.
This comes after the Islamic State affiliate set a Friday deadline for Egyptian authorities to free “Muslim women”, a term referring to female Islamist prisoners detained in a sweeping government crackdown following the 2013 military ouster of an Islamist president.
Croatian Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic told reporters he could not “confirm with 100 percent certainty” that Tomislav Salopek, who worked for French company CGG, had been murdered.
On Thursday, the Islamic State group’s radio station announced that its Egyptian affiliate had killed Salopek, the first word from the extremist group.
He was wearing a beige jumpsuit, like the one he had worn in a previous video.
Lately, said Omar Ashour, a senior lecturer in security studies at the University of Exeter in Britain, the group “has been steadily expanding the scale and scope and the intensity of its operations – including reaching outside the Sinai”. “She rejected the whole thing”.
The Egyptian and Croatian sides agreed to step up efforts within the coming hours in search of Tomislav Salopek, who was abducted on July 22.
The Daesh (so-called IS) militants have once again committed atrocities after publishing Wednesday a photograph reportedly showing the beheading of a Croatian hostage it abducted last month in Egypt. The company has an office in the leafy Cairo suburb of Maadi, where many expatriates and diplomats live.
The government has been struggling to project an image of stability and revive the economy following years of unrest.
Active in the northern Sinai Peninsula, Wilayet Sinai has claimed most attacks against security forces in the past two years.
The militant group has also claimed responsibility for a fatal car-bomb attack outside the Italian Consulate in Cairo, where one person was killed. “A confirmation may not come for several days”.
The Islamic State group holds about a third of Iraq and neighboring Syria in its self-declared “caliphate”. IS has released a number of graphic videos showing the beheading of hostages.