Nigerian Islamist group Ansaru on Saturday claimed to have killed seven foreign hostages abducted from a construction site last month in the country's restive north, SITE Intelligence Group said.
There was however no confirmation from Nigerian authorities or the countries where the hostages were said to come from. An official from the construction company, Setraco, told AFP he was aware of the report but could not confirm it.
According to SITE, "Al-Qabidun 'Ala al-Jamr (Grippers of Embers) Media Foundation, an affiliate of the Sinam al-Islam Network, issued the communique in Arabic and English on March 9, 2013, and also provided screen captures of a forthcoming video showing the dead hostages."
"In the communique, the group stated that the attempts by the British and Nigerian governments to rescue the hostages, and their alleged arrest and killing of people, forced it to carry out the execution," SITE said.
Police last month said the victims of the February 16 kidnapping in Bauchi state included four Lebanese, one Briton, a Greek citizen and an Italian. A company official later said the Middle Eastern hostages included two Lebanese and two Syrians.