US-based Human Rights Watch have identified the rebel as Abu Sakkar, a well-known insurgent from the city of Homs, reports the BBC.

“The mutilation of the bodies of enemies is a war crime. But the even more serious issue is the very rapid descent into sectarian rhetoric and violence,” HRW’s Peter Bouckaert told Reuters news agency.

The main Syrian opposition coalition said he would be put on trial.

The video, which has not been independently authenticated, seems to show him cutting out the heart before eating it, and he says:
“I swear to God we will eat your hearts and your livers, you soldiers of Bashar the dog,” 

The UN reports 70,000 dead since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad began in March 2011. The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights puts the death toll at  80,000.

Image via Getty