Foreign leaders remain hopeful about the possibility of securing Meriam Ibrahim’s release from prison in Sudan. The Christian mother of two, who is married to an American, has been sentenced to death for refusing to recant her faith.
Sudan’s foreign minister said he hopes the country’s justice system will find a solution soon “to everyone’s satisfaction.” Ali Ahmed Karti is in Berlin this week for bilateral meetings. While he said Sudan’s government cannot interfere in the judicial process, he also urged Ibrahim to appeal her case.
“In this woman’s case I hope naturally it will succeed in the next appeal,” Karti said.
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said it is Berlin’s “expectation” that Ibrahim will be freed.
Although U.S. President Barack Obama has been silent on Ibrahim's plight, other foreign leaders have voiced strong condemnation for Sudan's judicial system.
British Prime Minister David Cameron described her treatment as “barbaric,” saying it had no place in today’s world, while former Prime Minister Tony Blair said it was a “brutal and sickening distortion of faith.”
Cameron told Saturday’s edition of The Times of London that the British government was pressing Sudan to annul Ibrahim's sentence. Britain’s Labor Party leader Ed Miliband and Liberal Democrat chief Nick Clegg have also joined in the effort to free Ibrahim.
U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki confirmed on Monday that Ibahim’s Christian husband, Daniel Wani, is an American, but said officials didn’t have enough information to determine whether the couple’s children are Americans. By law, all children born to U.S. citizens have citizenship automatically, even if they were born in another country.
Ibrahim, 8 months pregnant at the time, was convicted of apostasy for marrying a Christian and sentenced to hang. She was also ordered to endure 100 lashes for “adultery.” Since her trial, she and her 20-month-old son have remained in prison. She gave birth to a daughter last week. The judge gave her two months to deliver her child, before receiving her lashes, and two years to nurse the baby before her execution.
Read WORLD’s past coverage on Meriam Ibrahim’s imprisonment here.