Right to Life calls on the New Zealand government to petition the Sudanese government to immediately release Mariam Ibrahim from imprisonment.
Mariam Yehya Ibrahim, a Sudanese mother, doctor and Christian, has been sentenced to be flogged 200 times and then sentenced to death unless she recants her Christian faith. She is 8 months pregnant and has a two-year-old son,.who is imprisoned with his mother. The father is not even allowed to care for Martin because he is a Christian and his son is considered a Muslim, the Court has declared. Where is the outcry from our government?
Mariam is charged with adultery, on the grounds that her marriage to a Christian man from South Sudan is considered void under Shari’a law, for which the penalty is flogging. She has also been charged with apostasy, or abandonment of religion, for which she has been sentenced to death.
In past cases involving pregnant or nursing women, the Sudanese government waited until the mother weaned her child before executing any sentence, said Christian Solidarity Worldwide spokeswoman Kiri Kankhwende.
Mariam is the daughter of a Christian woman and Muslim man. She was raised Christian after her father left. However, Sudanese law mandates that children born to Muslim fathers are considered Muslim.
The fact that a woman could be sentenced to death for her religious choice, and to flogging for being married to a man of an allegedly different religion is abhorrent. This is a violation of her inalienable right to life. Right to Life also believes that her imprisonment is a violation of the human rights of her unborn child who is being subject to a cruel and inhuman treatment. The flogging and execution of the child’s mother would be a flagrant denial of the right of the child to the care and love of its mother..
Right to Life encourages citizens to speak out and to urge our government to join the international community in calling upon the government of Sudan to respect the right to life and Mariam’s right to religious freedom. This ruling must be reversed and Mariam released immediately.