News / Africa

Sudan says Woman Sentenced to Death for Apostasy Can Appeal

Christian worshipers pray during Christmas mass at a Church in Khartoum, Sudan, Dec. 25, 2013. Christian worshipers pray during Christmas mass at a Church in Khartoum, Sudan, Dec. 25, 2013.
x
Christian worshipers pray during Christmas mass at a Church in Khartoum, Sudan, Dec. 25, 2013.
Christian worshipers pray during Christmas mass at a Church in Khartoum, Sudan, Dec. 25, 2013.
James Butty
Sudan’s Minister of Information said his government will not interfere in the case of Meriam Yahya Ibrahim, the woman who was sentenced to death for converting to Christianity.  

Ahmed Bilal said Sudan has an independent judiciary which is dealing with the case.  This follows media reports Ibrahim would be released within days.  

Bilal said, although Sharia dictates that a Muslim cannot change his or her religion, there are several fatwas in Islam, one of which allows for an appeal.
 
“I want to tell you one thing about this lady. The government has nothing to do. This is only a judiciary problem.  The family of Meriam Yahya Ibrahim, they have come to justice complaining about their sister,” he said.
 
Bilal says Sudan has a free judicial system, and Ms. Ibrahim has the right to appeal her sentencing.

“We know that in Islam, you cannot sentence to death a pregnant lady.  She has to give delivery to her baby and she has to complete at least two years with her baby, and after that is the sentencing.  This is not final.  She has all the rights to appeal.  But, our government has nothing to do with the case,” Bilal said.
                   
The United States and other countries have called on Sudan to free Ibrahim and respect the right to freedom of religion, including the right to change one’s faith or beliefs.
                   
Bilal said it is all Sharia at work, and the government has no part to play.
 
“In Islam, if you are a Muslim, you are not allowed to change your religion. This is Sharia; this is not the government.  But, in spite of that, I told you what Sharia said that no lady can be sentenced to death while she’s pregnant.  And, after that, there is a lot of fatwas.  She can appeal.”
 
He said Ibrahim is doing fine after giving birth in detention to a baby girl.
 
“She’s in a very good condition; she has all the care.  She delivered a healthy girl, and she’s in a good health condition; her husband, mother and everybody came to visit her.  Secondly, she has all the rights to appeal to another court,” Bilal said.
 
Last month, Khartoum ordered the arrest and imprisonment of former Sudanese Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi. The prosecutor has prevented media from reporting news of the arrest.
 
Bilal denied the arrest is a setback to the government’s self-proclaimed promotion of political dialogue.  He said al-Mahdi was arrested because he broke the law.
 
“The dialogue doesn’t mean that we have suspended the law.  Sadiq al-Mahdi is arrested because he broke the law,” Bilal said.
Butty interview with Bilal
Butty interview with Bilali
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

At International AIDS Conference One Goal, Many Paths

The 12,000 delegates attending 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne have vastly different visions about how to eradicate disease More

Disasters May Doom Malaysia’s Flag Carrier

Even before loss of two jets loaded with passengers on international flights, company had been operating in red for three years, accumulating deficit of $1.3 billion More

Afghan Presidential Vote Audit Continues Despite Glitches

Process has been marred by walkouts by representatives of two competing candidates, Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Agei
X
Elizabeth Lee
July 20, 2014 2:36 AM
Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.
Video

Video Diplomatic Crisis Grows Over MH17 Plane Crash

The Malaysia Airlines crash in eastern Ukraine is drawing reaction from leaders around the world. With suspicions growing that a surface-to-air missile shot down the aircraft, there are increasing tensions in the international community over who is to blame. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Undocumented Immigrants Face Perilous Journey to US, No Guarantees

Every day, hundreds of undocumented immigrants from Central America attempt the arduous journey through Mexico and turn themselves over to U.S. border patrol -- with the hope that they will not be turned away. But the dangers they face along the way are many, and as Ramon Taylor reports from the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, their fate rests on more than just the reception they get at the US border.
Video

Video Scientists Create Blackest Material Ever

Of all the black things in the universe only the infamous "black holes" are so black that not even a tiny amount of light can bounce back. But scientists have managed to create material almost as black, and it has enormous potential use. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Fog Collector Transforming Maasai Water Harvesting in Kenya

The Maasai people of Kenya are known for their cattle-herding, nomadic lifestyle. But it's an existence that depends on access to adequate water for their herds and flocks. Lenny Ruvaga reports for VOA, on a "fog collector."

AppleAndroid