US hostage Kayla Mueller was raped repeatedly by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed caliph of the Islamic State jihadist group, before her death, US television reported Friday.
Top IS leader Baghdadi personally brought the 26-year-old aid worker to be imprisoned inside the home of the group’s top financier, ABC News reported.
The television network quoted US counter-terrorism officials and spoke to Mueller’s parents, who confirmed being told by government officials that their daughter was sexually assaulted by Baghdadi.
“We were told Kayla was tortured, that she was the property of al-Baghdadi. We were told that in June by the government,” Carl and Marsha Mueller told ABC News.
The Iraqi extremist regularly visited the compound to meet his financial lieutenant, Abu Sayyaf, and to sexually assault Mueller, ABC said.
IS fighters claimed Mueller, who was kidnapped in the Syrian city of Aleppo in August 2013, was killed in a February 6 coalition air strike that buried her in rubble.
US officials say the circumstances of her death remain unclear.
Abu Sayyaf was killed on May 15 in a rare US commando raid on the town of Al-Omar inside war-torn Syria.
The fresh revelations about Mueller’s ordeal shatter rumors that she cooperated or was a willing spouse, which had deeply upset her family, ABC said.
It said the information about Baghdadi’s direct role in her abuse was drawn from a variety of sources, including US debriefings of two Yazidi teenage girls held as sex slaves in the Sayyaf compound and the interrogation of Abu Sayyaf’s wife.
Mueller would have turned 27 on Friday.
Republican Senator John McCain, from the Muellers’ home state of Arizona, has called on the government to explain why Sayyaf’s widow was not extradited to the United States to stand trial.
Although the White House said she was “complicit” in Mueller’s captivity, she was handed over to Kurdish authorities in Iraq. McCain questioned the reasons for her evading US justice.
‘Political blood in the water’: MSNBC’s Morning Joe mocks ‘desperate’ Trump for losing Kentucky and Louisiana
MSNBC's Joe Scarborough scorched President Donald Trump for squandering his political capital on vulnerable Republican candidates in two red-state losses.
The "Morning Joe" host questioned the president's decision to hold 11th-hour campaign rallies for Eddie Rispone in Louisiana and Gov. Matt Bevin in Kentucky -- both of whom lost their races.
"The president went all in," Scarborough said. "I want you to imagine a business owner whose daddy gave him $400 million, right? And then that business owner says, 'I'm going to start casinos in New Jersey,' right? Imagine that, and imagine a guy whose daddy gave him $400 million. We're just making this up right now, $400 million in today's dollars."
Trump is going through a mental health crisis that makes his judgment even more impulsive and ‘catastrophic’: psychologist
The first week of public impeachment hearings against Donald Trump in the House of Representatives has concluded. Despite the obsessive efforts of Trump’s Republican Party minions, his personal spokespeople and the right-wing disinformation media, the facts are clear: Multiple witnesses independently report that Donald Trump abused the power of the presidency for personal gain in an effort to bribe and extort the president of Ukraine into aiding his re-election campaign.
This article first appeared in Salon.As documented by Robert Mueller's report, the Ukraine scandal is part of a long pattern by Donald Trump and his supplicants to seek out foreign assistance to subvert American democracy, with the goal of first installing Trump in power and then keeping him there.
‘Too clever for its own good’: Progressives concerned over Warren’s new Medicare for All strategy
"The idea that the next Democratic president could pass a major public option bill and then, perhaps after the 2022 midterm elections, be in a position to pass actual Medicare for All is just not tenable. It's just not."
While Sen. Elizabeth Warren received praise from some high-profile Medicare for All proponents after the 2020 Democratic candidate released a detailed "transition plan" on Friday, progressive critics of the proposal openly worried the proposal reveals gaps in her commitment to the goal of universal healthcare, a naivety about the political fight needed to get there—or both.