A Sudanese woman sentenced to death for apostasy has given birth to a baby girl in the Khartoum prison where she is being held with her 20-month-old son. Meriam Ibrahim, 27, gave birth in the early hours of Tuesday, a month before her due date. Amnesty International said the condition of the mother and baby was not known as Ibrahim's lawyer and her husband, a US citizen, had been denied access to her.Share
Omdurman women's prison has a basic clinic, where the child is thought to have been born. Ibrahim has been shackled since being imprisoned. "The Sudanese government must guarantee her safety and the safety of her children, including the newborn baby," said Amnesty's Manar Idriss. Amnesty has called for Ibrahim's unconditional release.
This month a court ruled that Ibrahim's marriage to a Christian man was invalid and that she was guilty of apostasy and adultery. Ibrahim was sentenced to 100 lashes for adultery and to be hanged for apostasy.
Ibrahim denied the charges, telling the court she was the daughter of a Sudanese Muslim man and an Ethiopian Christian woman, and had been brought up as a Christian after her father left when she was six. She refused to renounce her faith.
Her lawyers lodged an appeal against the convictions last week. "There is no timeframe for the appeal. They usually take a few months, but given the international attention this might be much quicker," Idriss said. If the appeal fails, Ibrahim's lawyers may seek rulings from Sudan's supreme court and constitutional court.
Sudan has faced mounting international criticism over the case, with the UK government calling the convictions and sentences barbaric. The US state department said it was deeply disturbed by the case. Globally, more than 700,000 people had backed Amnesty's call for Ibrahim's release by noon on Tuesday, including 113,500 in the UK.
Idriss said conditions inside the prison were reasonable, but Amnesty was concerned about the use of restraints. It described shackling as cruel and inhuman. Ibrahim has told her lawyers that the shackles are painful and make movement difficult. Daniel Wani, Ibrahim's husband, who lives in Manchester, New Hampshire, is in Khartoum trying to secure his wife and children's release. The couple decided it was better for their young son, Martin, to remain with his mother. (Read more.)