Despite Death Sentence, Sudanese Woman Refuses to Renounce Faith in Christ

Meriam Ibrahim and Daniel Wani
Meriam Ibrahim and her husband, Daniel Wani, on their wedding day. (Courtesy of ACLJ)

Daniel Wani, the husband of the Sudanese woman sentenced to death for refusing to renounce her Christianity, says she will not likely change her mind.

Meriam Yehya Ibrahim, who just gave birth to her second child in prison while her eldest is being held with her, was convicted of apostasy. She was sentenced to receive 100 lashes and to be hanged because she would not profess to be a Muslim.

Since Shariah law considers Ibrahim a Muslim—the religion of her father who abandoned her as a child—Sudan will not recognize her marriage to Wani, a Christian and U.S. citizen. But he says her resolve will not fade.

"There is pressure on her from Muslim religious leaders that she should return to the faith," Wani told CNN. "She said, 'How can I return when I never was a Muslim? Yes, my father was a Muslim, but I was brought up by my mother.' "

Wani said he will stand by his wife and that he's hopeful for her situation.

"I'm hoping that given the way people have come together around the world, which I want to thank them for—all the rights groups, all the broadcasters. The media has really supported us, to the extent my phone now doesn't stop. ... It's looking like it had an effect. Perhaps it will result in the judgment being overturned," he said.

Rights groups and foreign embassies around the world have condemned Sudan's sentence against Ibrahim. But the government has so far stood by its ruling, even releasing a statement saying they are not "violating human rights."

There is no timetable on when Ibrahim's sentence will take place. She and her son have been detained since Jan. 17.

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