James Foley in Tripoli, Libya in August 2011.
The family of James Foley, the American citizen purportedly beheaded by ISIS forces in Syria, issued a statement late Tuesday night that praised his life and career as a photojournalist.
"We have never been prouder of our son Jim. He gave his life trying to expose the world to the suffering of the Syrian people," his mother, Diane Foley, wrote on Facebook.
Foley's apparent murder was recorded in a gruesome YouTube video that has since been taken down. ISIS, the jihadist military group that has been battling the U.S. and Iraqi governments, then reportedly threatened another journalist, Steven Sotloff, unless President Barack Obama gives in to their demands. Foley's mother begged the kidnappers to spare the lives of such hostages.
"We implore the kidnappers to spare the lives of the remaining hostages," she said. "Like Jim, they are innocents. They have no control over American government policy in Iraq, Syria or anywhere in the world."
She also requested privacy for the family.
"We thank Jim for all the joy he gave us. He was an extraordinary son, brother, journalist and person. Please respect our privacy in the days ahead as we mourn and cherish Jim," she said.
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