Children Held In Sudan Prison Because Family Is Christian; Mother Sentenced To Be Hanged
June 12, 2014
Two-year-old Martin and his baby sister Maya are being held in prison with their Mother in Sudan because their parents are Christian. Their mother, Meriam Ibrahim, is Sudanese and their Father, Daniel Wani, is a U.S. citizen.
Meriam has been sentenced to 100 lashes and death by hanging unless she rejects her Christian faith and converts to Islam. She and her children are awaiting her sentence while her case is on appeal. Daniel has been trying to work with the American consulate to rescue his family.
Daniel and Meriam's children may be presumed to be American citizens under U.S. Naturalization law, (although it's been reported that two-year-old Martin's documentation is pending DNA testing of his father).
The Senate has passed a resolution condemning the mistreatment of the children's Sudanese mother and has called for their freedom. The House version, (still pending) urges the U.S. Department of State to grant Meriam asylum. However, further action by the United States seems to be painfully measured.
Sudan will not release the children to their father because he is a Christian. In short, the children are in prison, like their mother, because the family is Christian. This, combined with their mother's death sentence, amounts to murder and kidnapping.
Surely it is the right of U.S. children not to be kidnapped. Contact your U.S. representatives. Tell them the United States must act to protect its citizens abroad.
Also petition our government to employ all available means to protect Meriam Ibrahim from execution or mistreatment, and to act expediently in processing a spousal visa or granting asylum so she can come to the United States with her husband.
White House Petition for Meriam and Her Children
U.S. Department of State:
House and Senate Foreign Affairs Office
Meriam and her son have been kept at Omdurman Federal Prison since February, 2014. On May 15 she was sentenced to be hanged, having refused to renounce Christianity.
Reports indicate that Meriam would not be executed until her infant daughter has been weaned, (unless her newborn succumbs to harsh prison conditions, one may suppose). Less clear is the punishment of 100 lashes.
Formal notification was given on June 5 that Sudan's Court of Appeals has begun deliberation of Meriam's Case.
According to CBSNews.com, Sudan has convicted a number of persons for apostasy in recent years, but they all escaped the death sentence by recanting their new faith.