Just two days ago I was celebrating the release of Meriam Yahia Ibrahim Ishag and her two children from Sudanese prison and the overturning of her death sentence for being a Christian. Almost as soon as I got my post about Answered Prayer up, the news came that the entire family had been rearrested at the airport.
The news reports since then have been full of conflicting information.
Here as I understand it, are the facts of the story. Daniel Wani was born in Sudan and is confined to a wheel chair due to muscular dystrophy. He fled Sudan as a refuge and lived in the United States. During his time in the US he became a US Citizen and has been one since 2005. In 2011 Daniel married Meriam, in a Christian ceremony. Both of them claim life long membership in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
Meriam has a half brother Al Samani Al Hadi Mohamed Abdullah who insists that his half sister Meriam has committed Islamic Apostasy and should be sentenced to death. He is also the source of the adultery charge. Under Islamic law if Merriam is not legally married to Daniel, Mr. Abdullah will inherit Meriam's successful businesses upon her death. Mr. Abdullah is the person who filed both the adultery charges and the Apostasy charges against his half sister. If the sentences are carried out, he will profit handsomely.
Meriam has steadfastly claimed she is a Christian and has refused to renounce her faith or her marriage to Daniel.
Monday Meriam was released from prison when her conviction was overturned during legal review of the case. Daniel, Meriam and their two children went to the airport and were awaiting a plane, some reports claim it was going to America, when they were "detained". From this point on the facts of the story are unclear.
One of the reports from Sudan says that the family was not detained by the government. It is unclear if this report is true. If it is correct, then the family has been kidnaped by a Islamic group with their own agenda.
The account of what happened that is being reported today, claims that the government has detained the family over an issue regarding their travel documents. This is being proclaimed as the official version of events. It is unclear if the family is in prison, or in some form of halfway house, as the accounts differ on this point.
It is my hope and prayer that the family is in official government custody. If they are not, their situation is much more grave. Also, if they are in some sort of official detention then diplomatic channels can be used to secure their freedom. Daniel and his children are legally US citizens, although Meriam is not.
At this point we do not know what is happening. I'm still praying and fasting on their behalf.
The family is in government custody. They are now facing 7 years in prison for problems with their passports. Meriam Ibrahim was 'kidnapped' and I went to police before she boarded flight to America, her brother says. He still wants her executed and is planning on appealing her release from prison.