Just a day after the news broke that she would walk free from prison, Meriam Yahya Ibrahim, the Sudanese Christian woman who was sentenced to death for her Christian beliefs, has reportedly been rearrested. Unfortunately, it's not the first time that freedom has been promised, and swiftly taken away, for Ibrahim.
Ibrahim's legal team told CNN’s Nima Elbagir and Jason Hanna that she was rearrested at the airport following her release from Omdurman women's prison on Monday after attempting to leave Sudan on Tuesday. Ibrahim was at the airport in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, with her husband, Daniel Wani, who is an American citizen, and her two children, one of whom was born during her stay in prison. They were detained and interrogated at Khartoum’s national security headquarters, Wani told CNN.
While the reason for Ibrahim’s re-arrest weren’t made immediately clear, The Telegraph’s Harriet Alexander reports that the family were detained because of documentation issues, and that the United States Embassy is trying to solve the problem. It’s believed the family were trying to travel to South Sudan as their U.S. paperwork is not yet ready. Wani has asked that the U.S. grant Ibrahim a visa and their children citizenship, a plea that is backed by two senators from New Hampshire, where Wani lives.
The rearrest also comes after a man claiming to be Ibrahim’s brother, who initially filed a complaint against his Christian-raised sister, recently made comments saying that he was seeking retribution. Al Samani Al Hadi, her brother, said that Ibrahim should be executed for refusing to renounce Christianity. Ibrahim was arrested in May and sentenced to death, in addition to being convicted of adultery and sentenced to 100 lashes, for being a Christian in Islamic Sudan.
The Telegraph has photos of Ibrahim being reunited with her family during her brief spell of freedom.