News / Africa

Sudan: Woman on Death Row to be Freed

Sudan - South Sudan map
Sudan - South Sudan map
Fern Robinson
Sudan's foreign ministry says a Sudanese woman sentenced to hang for identifying herself as a Christian will be freed "within days," following an international uproar over her conviction for apostasy.

Ministry spokesman Abdullah al-Azraq announced the development late Saturday in Khartoum, just days after the woman — 27-year-old Mariam Yahya Ibrahim — gave birth in prison while awaiting her execution.

Ibrahim is also the mother of a 20-month-old son. Both children are incarcerated with their mother.

Born to a Christian mother and a Muslim father and raised Christian after the father left the family, Ibrahim said she had never herself been a Muslim, despite Sudanese law defining children of Muslim fathers as Muslims by definition.

A court in early May gave her four days to recant her Christian faith, and imposed the death penalty when she refused to do so.

Christian-Muslim unions such as Ibrahim's marriage to U.S. citizen Daniel Wani are defined under Sudanese law as adultery, prompting the judge to impose an additional sentence of 100 lashes on the young mother.

Ibrahim's husband, Daniel Wani, is a Christian. He was not allowed to visit his wife and children on the day of the daughter's birth, but did see his family a few days afterwards. He says they are all doing well.

The death sentence sparked widespread criticism from Western governments and human rights organizations. The U.S. State Department protested the ruling and called on the Khartoum government to respect the right to freedom of religion. British Prime Minister David Cameron said the ruling has "no place in today's world."

Amnesty International also condemned the death sentence, calling it "abhorrent" and a flagrant breach of international human rights law.

Sudan's 2005 constitution guarantees the right to freedom of worship. But in practice, the government enforces a form of Islamic law.

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
    Next 
by: Kathy Hayes from: Columbia NC
June 02, 2014 8:34 PM
Praise The Lord! He can work miracles & answers prayers! It is about time the
governments of the. Western world took a stand and made the Islamic world see this brutal way of dealing with women is not going to be tolerated ,


by: Rev.Tony F Medina from: United States
June 02, 2014 3:50 PM
This is all good news But now what about another Christian who is being held in Iran , Pastor Speed ; ? Is he any less important than this woman ? Come now Let's do equally for all. And not be selective about who is who.


by: Forster from: USA
June 02, 2014 1:43 PM
Is Islamic law more important than HUMAN RIGHT? But I am glad to hear that she will be given her freedom. What about others who might like to exercise their human rights by leaving Islamic religion to any other religion of their choice ? However, let us not forget that human rights, peace ,freedom and justice do not oppose any religious principles and practices. Thank you.


by: Stuart & Tina Charrington from: Little Aston. Uk
June 01, 2014 3:16 PM
We are so pleased to hear that Miriam is apparantly going to be freed. We hope that the charges against her will also be revoked. May God bless this young mother and doctor and encourage her for her faith and bravery. Our constant thoughts and prayers remain with her and her family.


by: Rick from: uk
June 01, 2014 5:27 AM
It is great news that this brave lady is to be released and the death sentence is officially lifted but I fear for the families safety when she is released because if she were to be attacked in the streets by some " unknown " nutter then it would not be the fault of the government would it, they will be safe in that country again


by: Denis mkani from: Mwanza Tanzania
June 01, 2014 12:54 AM
This is gift to all women in sudan bt now they have to fight for their right apart from waiting for gifts because gifts dont come often.


by: Gwen Hartnell from: UK
May 31, 2014 7:08 PM
I have just read that this lady is to be released within days, I wonder if I would be so brave in that situation, may she know her faithfulness is a wonderful witness


by: Tatyana from: Miami
May 31, 2014 7:04 PM
That's a great ending to this story, but what do we do to make sure other, unheard stories get proper attention?


by: HelpDesk180 from: Upstate NY
May 31, 2014 6:59 PM
Legislating that any child fathered by a Muslin is by definition also a Muslim is an interesting way of expanding the faith. Thus, any child of rape that has never in their life heard the word Muslim must profess to be a member or die is about as perverted a law as could be dreamed up. Politics and Religion - the most deadly combination


by: colin hopkins from: scotland
May 31, 2014 6:45 PM
Muslim law. Lash a woman 100 time's hang her. Is this what god would do or satan. Muslim's ??

Comments page of 2
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
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.

AppleAndroid