An eight-month pregnant Sudanese woman, Meriam Yehya Ibrahim, 27, was sentenced to flogging and death last week, after she was convicted of adultery and apostasy. Apostasy is the "formal disaffiliation from or abandonment or renunciation of a religion." In Ibrahim's case she is not willing to renounce her Christianity and according to a May 18, report by CNN the government defended its verdict but said it is only preliminary.
Raised as a Christian
The issue is that the pregnant Ibrahim is a professed Christian, married to Christian husband, Daniel Wani, a Sudanese with U.S. citizenship who has been living in Manchester, N.H. However the court considers her a Muslim because her father was a Sudanese Muslim while her mother is an Ethiopian Orthodox. According to Ibrahim, her father abandoned them when Ibrahim was six years old and she was raised by her mother as a Christian. However, the lawyer representing Ibrahim's family claims the mother is a devout Muslim. Either way, in Sudan, and many of the other Muslim nations, Muslim men are allowed to marry outside their faith, but Muslim women cannot.
Husband has returned to Sudan
Daniel Wani and his brother, Gabriel, grew up in Sudan but today live in Manchester, N.H.. Now Daniel has returned to Sudan in an effort to save his wife's life.
U.S. calls on Sudan to uphold human rights
The U.S. condemned Sudan's court ruling last week. The State Department and the White House have both called on Sudan to uphold its human rights commitments. Plus U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte, who represents New Hampshire, has asked Secretary of State John Kerry to grant Ibrahim political asylum.
Over the weekend, the Sudan Tribune reported that the country's parliament speaker, al-Fatih Izz Al-Din, downplayed the death sentence and claimed the sentence was only preliminary and could be appealed in the future.