Jihadi John said he was going to Syria to do humanitarian work. Instead, he joined the Islamic State and started beheading people. The parents hadn’t heard from him since mid-2013.
The mother of the man identified as “Jihadi John” recognized immediately from his voice that her son was the alleged killer when he appeared in his first beheading video in August, Kuwaiti government officials told ABC News.
The parents of Mohammed Emwazi, who were questioned recently in Kuwait, told authorities they last heard from their son in mid-2013 when he called them from Turkey. Emwazi said he was going to do humanitarian work in Syria, the parents said, according to the officials. Emwazi’s father, a former policeman, said he’s been waiting for news of his son’s death ever since.
Instead of doing humanitarian work, Emwazi allegedly linked up with ISIS and has appeared in videos online apparently beheading Westerners, including several who were actual humanitarians.
The FBI said in September it had identified the black clad figure known in the media as “Jihadi John”, but the identity was kept secret until it was reported last week.
Ever since, a complex picture is emerging of the alleged murderer’s life before ISIS. Born in Kuwait, Emwazi moved with his family to London when he was a boy.
A school picture captured what appeared to be an angelic smile, but a teacher told the BBC Emwazi had anger management issues, for which he eventually went to therapy.
A former boss of Emwazi’s in Kuwait, when Emwazi briefly lived there in 2010, told The Guardian that Emwazi was a stellar employee, “calm and decent.”
Read more: ABC News