Isis to launch first 24-hour online TV channel featuring British hostage John Cantlie and flagship show 'Time to Recruit'

A teaser video has been released – but a possible address has since gone down

A still from the reported trailer for Isis' new 24-hour online TV channel
A still from the reported trailer for Isis' new 24-hour online TV channel

The Isis militant group is reportedly launching its own online TV channel, featuring a series from the British hostage John Cantlie and a weekly programme called “Time to Recruit”.

Social media accounts linked to the group have begun sharing a so-called “teaser” video, which claimed the channel would broadcast 24 hours a day and be named “The Islamic Caliphate Broadcast”.

Isis already operates a radio station based in Mosul called al-Bayan, as well as a satellite TV station called Tawheed in Libya, but a 24/7 news channel targeting an international audience would be a step up for the group’s propaganda machine.

A number of users linked to what they said would be the web address of the new channel at the end of last week. Khilafalive.info reportedly played a selection of Isis propaganda videos and music before it became inaccessible on Saturday.

The teaser video first emerged on Isis supporters’ forums and was unearthed by the news website Vocativ. It said the “Time to Recruit” programme was being billed as a more structured effort to encourage young Muslims to join the militant group’s ranks, and that it would broadcast on Wednesday at 5pm “Islamic State Time”.

A holding page on one of the channels at khilafalive.info

John Cantlie, abducted by Isis at the same time as the American photographer James Foley who was later beheaded, has not been seen “fronting” a propaganda video since the release of a bizarre travelogue from Mosul on 3 January.

It was the sixth to include the British journalist, and represented a marked change in style from the first four – where Cantlie is shown sat at a desk wearing an orange prisoner’s jumpsuit – and the fifth, where he has a beard, black clothes and an apparently freer role walking through the city of Kobani.

Undated video grab taken from YouTube believed to be of John Cantlie, which Islamic State (IS) have released purportedly showing him giving a tour of the Iraqi city Mosul.
Another propaganda video presented hostage John Cantlie as a war reporter in Mosul

Any link between the official-seeming Isis TV channel teaser video and the khilafalive.info URL is yet to be confirmed.

Experts have suggested it is suspicious that website registration records show the site was set up in early December, yet it has received no recognition from official Isis outlets. JM Berger, an online extremism analyst, told the Washington Post: “My best guess is this is a fanboy effort.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in