On Friday, ISIL claimed that American Kayla Mueller, who had been captured in northern Syria in 2013, was dead. On Tuesday, her family said they received confirmation that she is dead. In a statement, they said, “We are heartbroken to share that we’ve received confirmation that Kayla Jean Mueller, has lost her life.”
President Obama conveyed the First Family’s “deepest condolences” to Kayla’s family in a statement from the White House, “At this time of unimaginable suffering, the country shares in their grief.” The President vowed to find and bring to justice to the terrorists responsible for her death, “No matter how long it takes, the United States will find and bring to justice the terrorists who are responsible for Kayla’s captivity and death.”
The President honored Kayla’s memory by highlighting that she spent her life helping others, “In Prescott, Arizona, she volunteered at a women’s shelter and worked at an HIV/AIDS clinic. She worked with humanitarian organizations in India, Israel, and the Palestinian territories, compelled by her desire to serve others. Eventually, her path took her to Turkey, where she helped provide comfort and support to Syrian refugees forced to flee their homes during the war. Kayla’s compassion and dedication to assisting those in need shows us that even amongst unconscionable evil, the essential decency of humanity can live on.”
“Kayla represents what is best about America, and expressed her deep pride in the freedoms that we Americans enjoy, and that so many others strive for around the world,” President Obama said in a statement. Quoting her, he continued, “She said: ‘Here we are. Free to speak out without fear of being killed, blessed to be protected by the same law we are subjected to, free to see our families as we please, free to cross borders and free to disagree. We have many people to thank for these freedoms and I see it as an injustice not to use them to their fullest.'”
Saying Kayla ” epitomized all that is good in our world,” the President vowed to find and bring justice to those responsible for her death, “No matter how long it takes, the United States will find and bring to justice the terrorists who are responsible for Kayla’s captivity and death.”
Obama condemned ISIL as “a hateful and abhorrent terrorist group whose actions stand in stark contrast to the spirit of people like Kayla. On this day, we take comfort in the fact that the future belongs not to those who destroy, but rather to the irrepressible force of human goodness that Kayla Mueller shall forever represent.”
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.