She has faced a death sentence, one hundred lashes, a medieval jail cell, a series of lawsuits, an unexpected and terrifying arrest at the airport, a subsequent detention, and a non-stop series of lawsuits which have yet to quit.
I am talking about the very young, the very beautiful, the very accomplished Christian woman, Dr. Meriam Yahya Ishag, of Sudan.
Will the United States be able to get Dr. Meriam out of this God-forsaken country or not? When will my country be able to free her and her American family from the shackles of the most savage Shariah law? Can we, a nation of infidels, actually do so–override Shariah law?
Can we afford not to do so?
As of this writing, the Sub-Committee on Africa, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations Hearing in the American Congress is holding a hearing about her case right now. Scheduled to speak are Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, Commissioner, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom; The Honorable Tony Perkins, President, the Family Research Council, the Honorable Grover Joseph Rees, Former General Counsel, U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service; and Mr. Omer Ismail, Senior Policy Advisor, Enough Project. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), (R-Ca), is the Chair of this House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
This Committee has twenty four Republican and twenty Democratic members.
Chairman Chris Smith, (R-New Jersey), of the Sub-Committee, has said: “Meriam Ibrahim Ishag has been imprisoned in Sudan in fear of execution, chained during the late stages of her pregnancy, forced to give birth in prison, released from prison and re-arrested on flimsy charges. This all is the result of her being Christian in a country in which ruling authorities refuse to recognize the right of people to choose their own religion. Our hearing will examine this troubling violation of a basic human right.”
Meriam, her husband, and their two children have been sheltered in the American Embassy in Khartoum for the last month. However, despite strong American and Christian support, she has still not been allowed to exit the country and return to her husband’s home in the United States.
As we know, she is the woman who, last May, was condemned to death in Sudan by its Muslim government for the alleged high crime of apostasy i.e. leaving the Muslim faith of the father who abandoned her, and practicing the Christian faith in which her Christian mother reared her. For this, she was jailed under medieval conditions where she gave birth to her second child, a daughter, while still was still shackled to the floor of her cell.
Her second high crime was that of marrying a Christian man–something forbidden to Muslim women.
Her third crime–perhaps not a high crime but a decisive one nonetheless–was allegedly not having the right travel documents.
Meriam also faced a lawsuit brought by the men in her missing Muslim father’s family. They sought to establish that she was the Muslim daughter of a Muslim father; that lawsuit was only dropped on July 17, 2014.
However, on July 18th, the very next day, these male relatives also brought a new lawsuit which seeks to annul her marriage to her Christian husband.
Let us be clear. These Muslim male relatives and Sudan’s government mean to continue tormenting their prey. They have no intention of letting her leave.
Please prove me wrong.
I want to thank Laurie Jalbert and Dominic Sputo for keeping me up to date and for their tireless efforts on behalf of international religious freedom.