A British television station has released footage confirmed to be that of a teenage Mohammed Emwazi, who has since become the infamous "Jihadi John" believed to be serving as chief executioner at the beheadings of several prisoners of the Islamic State (ISIS).
In the film clip, released by the UK's Channel 4
on Thursday, Emwazi is shown as a teenager being picked to play in a football game, and moving continually to stay out of the camera's range.
Story continues below video.
The boy was shy as a teenager, the news report said, and did not like being photographed. Reportedly, he often covered his mouth and face when he was nervous, reports The New York Post
The video was shot in the playground of Quintin Kynaston Academy, the northwest London school Emwazi attended, and shows about a dozen boys picking teams for their soccer game. At one point, one of the boys can be heard shouting his name to call him over.
Emwazi, the boy who would become "Jihadi John," hid his face with his arm when crossing the playground and attempted to keep his back to the camera while the teams were being picked.
The video was shot in May 2004, when Emwazi was 15 years old, and both a former teacher and an ex-classmate confirmed it was Emwazi on the tape.
Jo Shuter, the former headteacher at Quintin Kynaston, said earlier this week that Emwazi was bullied while in school and did not have many friends, reports The Telegraph
, adding that staff members had to help him overcome "adolescent issues."
Shuter told BBC Radio 4's "Today" program that, even though Emwazi "wasn’t a particularly social young man" and "didn’t have a huge group of friends, he was a "quiet, reasonably hardworking young person" who gave no indication of what his future would hold.
The Washington Post last week revealed the boy grew up to be "Jihadi John," who is believed to have beheaded a number of Western hostages, including American journalists James Foley and Stephen Sotloff, as well as British aid workers David Haines and Alan Henning, and to be the person boasting of the deaths on camera.
According to Channel Four News, the Quintin Kynaston school is under investigation, after it was revealed that Emwazi was not the only former student who has gone on to join ISIS fighters in the Middle East.
Choukri Ellekhlifi, another former student, was killed in 2013 while fighting alongside ISIS, and is believed to have helped Emwazi guard hostages in Syria. In addition, Mohamed Sakr, also a former student, died in a U.S. drone strike in Somalia in 2012. He was three years older than Emwazi.
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