US Congressman Chris Smith (NJ-04), Chairman of the Africa Committee, applauded the release of Meriam Ibrahim, the Sudanese woman sentenced to death for not recanting her faith. Please continue to pray for Meriam and her family as they face fresh obtacles relating to travel documents.
“Meriam Ibrahim’s faith in God and willingness to endure torture – even martyrdom – rather than recant, is extraordinarily courageous and inspiring. What a remarkable woman,” Smith said. Meriam Ibrahim’s convictions on apostasy and adultery were overturned by a Sudanese appeals court, and she and her children were released from prison unconditionally. She had faced flogging and subsequent execution by authorities in Sudan under her conviction. The family currently is residing in a safe location until their departure from Sudan due to threats against their lives.
“This is a huge first step,” said Smith, who along with three other members of Congress (Reps. Frank Wolf (VA-10), Mark Meadows (NC-11) and Joe Pitts (PA-16) had met with the highest ranking Sudanese official in Washington, Ambassador Maowia O. Khalid (Charge d’Affaires) Friday to discuss the Meriam Ibrahim case, after which he postponed a congressional hearing on the case set for tomorrow. “But the second step is that Meriam Ibrahim and her husband and their children will be on a plane and heading to the United States.”
The Administration will likely grant humanitarian parole to Meriam Ibrahim and her children after receiving the documents necessary to promptly process the case. She, her husband and two children will be able to leave Sudan immediately after the expected ruling by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Meriam Ibrahim and her children will be able to alter their status when in the United States. Her husband, Daniel Wani, is already a naturalized U.S. citizen.
Smith said, “I deeply appreciate and applaud the Sudanese Court for its decision.”