Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

Meriam Ibrahim: Christian death row woman cheered as she arrives safely in US

A Sudanese woman who was sentenced to death for converting to Christianity from Islam has received a hero's welcome on arrival in the United States.

Meriam Ibrahim and husband Daniel Wani were overwhelmed by the welcome. Credit: Reuters

Since leaving Sudan after her sentence and detention triggered international outrage, Ibrahim has been in Rome, but arrived yesterday to cheers from friends and family in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Ibrahim, 27, was sentenced to death in May after marrying Christian South Sudanese-American, Daniel Wani.

Although her conviction was quashed in June, Sudan's government accused her of trying to leave the country with falsified papers, and stopped her from leaving for the US.

It's freedom. It's all about freedom, and that's what she's getting right now. She's getting freedom.

– Rosella Lewis, family friend

After she was finally released, she travelled to Rome where she met with Pope Francis, and was reunited with her husband and children, including youngest child Maya who was born while Meriam was in captivity.

She told CNN the traumatic birth in May, which took place while she was still in chains, has left the young child disabled, though this has not yet been verified.

I gave birth chained. Not cuffs but chains on my legs. I couldn't open my legs so the women had to lift me off the table. I wasn't attached to the table.

– Meriam Ibrahim, CNN interview

Renouncing the Islamic faith is punishable by death under many countries' interpretation of Islamic law.