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Thursday, November 19, 2015, 17:43

China vows justice after IS kills national

By Agencies

China vows justice after IS kills national
This combination of undated photos taken from the Islamic State group's online magazine Dabiq purports to show Ole Johan Grimsgaard-Ofstad, 48, from Oslo, Norway (left) and Fan Jinghui, 50, from Beijing, China. (Dabi q via AP)

BEIJING - China's Foreign Ministry said on Thursday it will "bring to justice" those responsible for executing a Chinese national in the Middle East, after Islamic State said it had killed a Chinese captive.

The ministry, in a brief statement, also confirmed the man's identity as Fan Jinghui, saying he had been "cruelly murdered".

Chinese President Xi Jinping strongly condemned the IS for killing the Chinese hostage, saying that China opposes any form of terrorism.

He made the remarks on the sidelines of the 23rd Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Leaders' Meeting.

The President expressed his condolences to the victim's family, saying, "Terrorists are the common enemy of humankind."

China will strengthen protection of its citizens and organizations overseas, Premier Li Keqiang said. "The Chinese government strongly condemns the atrocity," Li said, expressing his deep sympathy to the victim's family. The Chinese government attaches great importance to the safety of its citizens overseas, the premier said.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said: "The Chinese government strongly condemns the atrocity against humanity and the criminals must be brought to justice." Islamic State said in the latest edition of its English language magazine on Wednesday that it had killed a Chinese and a Norwegian captive, showing what appeared to be pictures of the dead men under a banner reading "Executed".

The foreign ministry said in September one of its citizens appeared to be in Islamic State captivity.

After he was kidnapped, the Chinese government activated an emergency mechanism to try and "rescue" him, but he was still killed in a "cold-blooded way", the ministry said.

"The Chinese government strongly condemns this savage act devoid of humanity and will certainly bring the criminals to justice," it added.

"The Chinese government will resolutely oppose all forms of terrorism, and resolutely strike at any violent terrorist criminal activities that defy the bottom lines of human culture," the statement said.

"China will continue to strengthen anti-terrorism cooperation with the international community to maintain peace and tranquility in the world."

Earlier in September, the IS said it had captured a Chinese and a Norwegian hostage, who were identified by IS's English-language magazine Dabiq as Fan Jinghui, a freelance consultant from China, and Ole Johan Grimsgaard-Ofstad from Norway.

The group did not specify when or where the two had been captured.

The Foreign Ministry said then that the description given by the IS about Fan matches a Chinese missing abroad, adding that China is firmly opposed to violence against innocent civilians.

The Norwegian Foreign Ministry declined to comment.

In the previous issue of the magazine, Dabiq, Islamic State showed pictures of two men who it said were Norwegian and Chinese, wearing yellow suits and with shaved heads.

It said their governments had "abandoned" them, but that they were "for sale" and ransom payments could secure their release.

It identified the Chinese man as Fan Jinghui and said he was a 50-year-old freelance consultant from Beijing. It identified Grimsgaard-Ofstad as a candidate for a masters degree in political science born in 1967.

In its latest issue, it did not give any details about how, when or where they were killed.

The magazine also carried a photo of what it said was the improvised bomb that brought down a Russian airliner over Egypt's Sinai Peninsula last month, killing all 224 people on board.

The state-run Beijing News said Fan was probably a former advertising executive who lived in a western suburb of Beijing, but that his company shut down in 2003.

It is not clear why he had gone to the Middle East.

It said it had found an advertising firm registered to Fan in western Beijing. Security officials stood guard outside the low-rise building on Thursday.

The Global Times cited an interview Fan gave to Chinese state television in 2001 in which he said he had a sense of adventure - and danger.

"I sedulously seek out a feeling of 'un-safety', because it gives me a kind of pleasant sensation once the danger is past," Fan said.

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