Just two days after being spared death by hanging and freed from prison, Meriam Yahia Ibrahim Ishag, the Sudanese-Christian woman jailed for refusing to reject her faith, has been re-arrested in Sudan.
In today’s arrest, Ms. Ibrahim Ishag, 27, is being investigated for using fraudulent documents in an attempt to leave the country.
The Agence-France Presse reports, that Ms. Ibrahim Ishag was attempting to travel to South Sudan en route to the United States. There are no direct flights to the U.S. from Sudan, which has been under a trade embargo with the U.S. since 1997.
At the Khartoum airport, Ms. Ibrahim Ishag, her American citizen husband, Daniel Wani, and their two children, a 20-month old, and an infant born while Ibrahim Ishag was on death row, were met by Sudanese security forces, arrested, and taken to detained at a Khartoum police station.
The Agence-France Presse report says Ms. Ibrahim Ishag was traveling in a bullet-proofed, guarded American embassy vehicle. American embassy personnel were also traveling with Ibrahim Ishag and her husband.
Sudanese foreign ministry official Abdullahi Alzareg was quoted saying that Ibrahim Ishag’s arrival at the airport with American officials was “fishy.”
The reports are that Ms. Ibrahim is being questioned at the police station and has not been released.
Just two days ago, on June 23, 2014, after a huge international outcry, including the United States government, the Sudanese Appeals Court ordered Ms Ibrahim Ishag released.
Ms. Ibrahim Ishag was born to a Muslim father and an Ethiopian Orthodox Christian mother. The father left the family when Ibrahim Ishag was a very young child, and she was raised by her mother under the Christian faith. Ms. Ibrahim Ishag, 26, married a US citizen, Daniel Wani, a Christian.
Sudan, one of the most violent and lawless countries in the world, operates under its own interpretation of Islamic Sharia law. Under Sharia, one must first be a Muslim. And then it is forbidden for a Muslim woman to marry a non-Muslim man.
According to Sudan’s Sharia, Ms. Ibrahim Ishag committed both apostasy, rejection of religious faith, and adultery by marrying a Christian.
In May, Ms. Ibrahim Ishag was found guilty of adultery and apostasy. She was ordered to recant, and she refused. She was sentenced to 100 lashes as well as a death-by-hanging sentence.
It has not been reported whether Ibrahim Ishag received the 100-lash punishment.