(AA) – Jordanian King Abdullah II on Thursday visited the southern village of Ai to offer condolences to the family of a 27-year-old Jordanian pilot executed earlier this week in Syria by the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) group.
The Jordanian Royal Court has yet to confirm King Abdullah’s visit to the village, which lies in the southern Al-Karak province, although the event was covered by local and international news media.
On Wednesday, King Abdullah promised a “devastating response” by the Jordanian army following the execution of air force pilot Moaz al-Kasasba.
Al-Kasasba’s murder was shown one day earlier in an online video purportedly showing him being burnt alive by his ISIL captors.
The gruesome video sent shockwaves across Jordan, which is already a member of an ongoing U.S.-led air campaign against the ISIL, as well as a fresh wave of global outrage against the militant group.
Al-Kasasba was captured by ISIL militants after his fighter plane crashed in the Syrian city of Raqqa last December.
Shortly after the appearance of the video on Tuesday, Jordanian authorities executed two Iraqi nationals – Sajida al-Rishawi and Ziyad al-Karbouli – who had been on a death row since 2006 after being convicted of terrorism by a Jordanian court.
Last summer, the ISIL captured large swathes of land in Iraq and Syria, killing thousands of people in the process. It later declared the captured territories to be part of a self-styled “Islamic caliphate.”
Since the group captured the northern Iraqi city of Mosul in June of last year, a U.S.-led coalition – which includes Jordan – has carried out numerous airstrikes against ISIL targets in both Iraq and Syria.