No U.S. Consular Service for Meriam

meriam in prison 2On YouTube there is a video of the punishment for adultery that will soon be meted out to Sudanese Christian Dr. Meriam Yahya Ibrahim unless the United States government intervenes on her behalf. But some disturbing information revealed by Meriam’s husband, Daniel Wani, a naturalized U.S. citizen, suggests that “not leaving behind” this wife of an American citizen may not even be contemplated by the Obama Administration without strong pressure from caring advocates.

The video, featuring a terrified young Sudanese woman being whipped in front of onlookers at a Khartoum police station is so disturbing that it has been age-restricted by YouTube. Even her distress anticipating the flogging looks physically painful itself. Meriam has already had weeks to anticipate her upcoming flogging. She is to receive 100 lashes for her marriage to a South Sudanese Christian. Because the Shariah court in Khartoum considers her a Muslim, it does not recognize her marriage to Wani.

Meriam’s suffering will not end with the agony of lashes. That punishment will be followed within two years’ time by her execution for apostasy. The delay is because the court will wait until her newborn baby, Maya, has been weaned. Meriam will then be killed, according to Shariah, for the crime of refusing to renounce her faith in Jesus Christ and “revert” to Islam.

While waiting to be hanged, Meriam, 27, is shackled to the wall of the Omdurman Women’s Prison, along with her 20 month-old son, Martin. On May 27, when she gave birth to Maya, she was forced to endure labor on a filthy floor while still in leg irons, according to her distressed husband. Now, nursing Maya keeps her from the gallows, but she is not even permitted to nurse her baby and care for her toddler in peace. She has to suffer the continuous visits of Muslim clerics, attempting to pressure her into conversion.

Current photos of the gaunt inmate Meriam holding baby Maya are shocking after viewing photos of Meriam as Daniel’s beautiful bride. Traded-for-Taliban-terrorists Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl looks in the pink after his five years with Islamists (in spite of President Obama’s excuse for negotiating a deal with the devil being concern for the soldier’s health), compared to Meriam’s deteriorating appearance after just five months in Islamist captivity.

Where are the President’s grand gestures to rescue this young Christian wife of an American? Will President Obama be Meriam’s knight in shining armor, as he has been for Bergdahl?

Sadly, there is no evidence of any planned intervention by the Obama Administration for Meriam and her children. And since Meriam’s sentencing there has been no public statement in her defense coming from that direction. There have, however, been vigorous condemnations from British Prime Minister David Cameron, former U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator for Sudan Mukesh Kapila, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, and other international leaders.

Wani, a biochemist who has lived in Manchester, New Hampshire since 1998, revealed that while officials from the British and Canadian Embassies and from the European Union have all expressed sympathy and been “incredibly helpful,” the officials at the U.S. Embassy in Khartoum have been “entirely unhelpful.” This information has deeply concerned British advocacy organization Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW), which has been in ongoing consultation with Daniel and his legal team.

The U.S. Embassy’s neglect began in September 2013 when Meriam, Daniel, and little Martin were all arrested. Daniel’s attorney, Mohamed Mustafa Elnour, (an extremely courageous man – as is the whole legal team) told CSW that the Embassy did not answer Daniel’s call to their direct line for consular assistance or offer any consular aid to wheelchair-bound Wani, who suffers from Muscular Dystrophy. He was held by the Sudanese government for 12 hours before posting bail. Daniel also asked the Embassy for help when there was an attempt to kidnap Martin. Again, there was no response from the Embassy.

After his release, Daniel again sought help at the US Embassy to defend Meriam, but the Embassy told him that they couldn’t help him since Meriam was not a U.S. citizen. They suggested he hire an attorney and “deal with it through the Sudanese legal system,” which means, apparently, that the U.S. Embassy has more respect for Shariah than for the rights of a U.S. citizen.

Of this circumstance, CSW says:

 It is important to note . . . that Daniel also stood accused by the courts of ‘converting a Muslim woman in order to marry her’, in violation of national law. His passport was confiscated and he was barred from travelling by the Sudanese authorities until May, when the courts accepted that he genuinely believed Meriam to be a Christian at the time of their marriage. The failure of the US Embassy to provide consular assistance to a US citizen who was facing such serious charges, along with the fact that his wife and child were imprisoned through this period, is indefensible.

In addition to their unwillingness to help Daniel with the legal battle, the U.S. Embassy in Khartoum has refused to register Meriam and Daniel’s children as U.S. citizens unless Daniel provides DNA evidence of paternity for both Martin and newborn Maya. Daniel began the process of registering Martin as a U.S. citizen earlier this year. He informed CSW that at an interview with Embassy staff he was “told verbally” that Martin “fulfilled all the requirements.”

With that assurance, Daniel paid the processing fee and initiated an application for Martin’s U.S. passport. When he next presented himself at the Embassy to submit his son’s birth certificate and the payment for the passport, he was instructed to meet with an official called “Candy.” (It seems odd and somewhat condescending that all of the Embassy officials with whom Daniel and his attorneys met were only identified to him by their first name.)

Daniel told CSW that the tone of the interview with Candy was “very aggressive,” and “more like an interrogation.” She asked Daniel about Meriam’s degree from Sudan University, but he refused to answer that question because of Meriam’s legal case going on in the Khartoum court. In response, the Embassy suspended the application for U.S. citizenship/passport for Martin saying that “Daniel had not proven that he knew his wife well.” They told him that they would not resume the process unless Daniel provided DNA evidence of a genetic link.

CSW notes that the U.S. State Department’s own website says “DNA testing is the only biological testing method currently accepted by the Department to establish a biological relationship. However, due to the expense, complexity, and logistical delays inherent in parentage testing, genetic testing generally should be used only in the absence of sufficient other evidence (documentation, photos, etc.) establishing the relationship.”

Daniel provided his and Meriam’s marriage certificate, the birth certificates listing him as the father, as well as family photos, to “establish the relationship.” Certainly the U.S. Embassy should consider the incarceration of both children in a Sudanese prison as complex enough of a reason to accept the already sufficient evidence that Daniel has provided in documentation and photos. In addition, if the State Department had provided a spousal visa for Meriam to travel to the United States with Daniel soon after their wedding when he had applied for it, none of these other encounters would have been necessary.

At Daniel and Elnour’s most recent meeting at the U.S. Embassy on June 2 they met with “Kate” and “Chris.” Attorney Elnour described the meeting as “antagonistic, with Daniel fighting for his family and the Embassy staff being totally unhelpful.” The Embassy still insists on DNA evidence that Martin and Maya are Daniel’s children even now that it knows that if Meriam is executed her children will be given to the same Muslim relatives who had her arrested. They offered no assistance to Daniel, but had him sign a “Privacy Waiver” that allows the State Department to respond to questions from Congress and the media about the case.

Ann Buwalda, immigration attorney and director of Christian human rights group Jubilee Campaign, called the Embassy’s demand that Daniel produce a DNA test “a reprehensible display of obstruction and contrary to mandates of U.S. immigration law.” In an email blast to Jubilee Campaign supporters, Buwalda said that the group’s Netherlands office has produced a report showing how the verdicts given in Meriam’s case contravene international law and even Sudanese law.

Unlike the Administration, the U.S. Congress is attempting to help Meriam in a number of ways. Members have introduced and even already passed resolutions in both Houses. But all of these efforts need to be unified, sending the same message and asking for the same thing. If advocates for this beleaguered family want Congress to take most efficient and reliable path to saving Meriam and her children and assisting Daniel, Buwalda has several recommendations.

First, representatives and senators should be pressed to personally call the U.S. State Department to protest the outrageous requirement of DNA testing, to demand the immediate issuance of U.S. passports to Martin and Maya, U.S. citizen children, and to request the U.S. Consulate to issue Meriam an emergency travel document called a Significant Public Benefit Parole. Second, Buwalda said that Congress should be urged to pass a Private Bill granting immediate U.S. citizenship to Meriam Yahya Ibrahim. Finally, advocates should write to the Sudan Embassy to demand that Sudan release Meriam immediately since there is no legal basis for her conviction.

The definition of a consul includes “assisting his or her government’s citizens in a foreign country.” Sadly, neither consul nor government is assisting this U.S. citizen and his family in a foreign country. But hundreds of thousands of Americans and people around the world are outraged by the plight of Meriam, Daniel, and their children. They must be the consuls. They must use their voices, their advocacy, and their influence to assist a fellow U.S. citizen, to reunite him with his wife and children, to save Meriam.

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  • Pete

    Daniel Wani or some advocate of his needs to get a hold of some 1960s era civil right leader or some current civil right leader in the black community that has some cred.

    Then they need to have some marches in a few or several in tier 1 American cites. They may need to do this more than once until the 4th estate (MSM/LSM) is shamed into covering it and the Obama administration and the Demoncats are forced to act.

    While it is understood that a nation cannot protect its’ citizens overseas in all cases compare this to other nations. CHINA has 1,000(?) police officers in Paris to help its citizens in case their are victims of street crime. Britain also has police officers in Paris. That is what other countries are doing.

    WTF is the U.S. doing?

  • Pete

    “The Embassy still insists on DNA evidence that Martin and Maya are Daniel’s children”

    Why? Should there not be reasonable suspicion.

    I read where at one Portland, Oregon hospital 10% of the babies born with bast_rds as determined by blood typing. Paternity does not seems to mater in the U.S. Look at Woody Allen’s (?) Is Woody the father or is Blue Eyes the father?

    Many Leftists think inheritance, marriage, and private property is so passé. This is a 20% to 50% Leftist nation run by a Leftist administration and they are busting this guy’s balls on a technicality, because they are afraid of a Muslim World. That’s the long and the short of it.

    In most states if a woman says you are the daddy you are the daddy unless you get a DNA test proving otherwise with a set amount of time usually a few months. Then you can have your wages garnished by the state for a kid that is not yours born of a mother who you may have no carnal knowledge of.

    Sow why are they busting this guys balls? Because he is black? Or a black Christian?

    • Porkys2istan

      They’re busting this guys balls because they DON’T want to help him. I’ve had lots of friends marry (white) Europeans and the immigrations service seems to take an almost perverse delight in making sure these marriages are ‘legitimate’. Meanwhile you can ‘buy’ mail order brides from across the planet, 200k to 400k illegals cross the border every year with no consequences, and any muslim can claim ‘asylum’ and stay forever on appeals (with benefits).

      The only thing unique about this case is that the US immigration service usually only applies this type of harassment for white Europeans who actually follow the rules.

      • Pete

        I’m white and I married a Han. My spouse and I were questioned separately about things such as the color of the car etc to see if we were actually living together.

        It was either due diligence or something else. The questioner (white) seemed vaguely hostile like we were trying to put one over on the system.

        • Porkys2istan

          1. FYI, I’m not technically white.

          2. Good luck with marriage. You’ll need it. :P

          3. I’ve had friends who were interviewed separately 3 or more times by very hostile and aggressive immigration service personnel. One of my friends almost had a nervous breakdown because she was sure that they were going to deport her husband who was an ENGINEER at Daimler-Chrysler in America.

          They can’t deport 10 million+ illegal Mexicans, but they go out of their way to deport a single European engineer? From what I’ve seen, the more you obey the law and follow the rules (like most Europeans do) the more they punish you. When you break the law, it’s like they can’t (or won’t) do anything to you.

          Maybe it has something to do with H-1B visas or something.

          • Pete

            I think Americans should be able to marry whoever they want. If Americans marry foreigners and the bureaucrats think 1 million immigrants is the optimal target immigration level for that year but through marriage it ends up being 2 million, F_CK THEM!

            I don’t believe in chain migration for the usual reason and one other. Nor do I believe in anchor babies. Canada did away with that 10 years ago or more.

            I have 20 something years so far. I married a professional from a good family from an upper middle class family from a classless society. That is they were not trying to escape poverty and they speak (& I mean) perfect English. They even think in English now (There is nothing like seeing the spouse get a phone call, have to switch to mandarin, and you can see the delay as they translate their thoughts from English to Mandarin. It is like watching a rusted, corroded gear train start to turn).

            On a tangent about a classless society all those Marixists wannabe do not understand Marxism the same way my spouse does. For one my spouse was taught and expects a differentiated wage scale based on job type, which means different pay and benefits. That is inequality.

  • Hard Little Machine

    If she were Mexican, Obama would be falling over himself to bring her here.

  • Truth Seeker

    US help would have come without any problem, had she been a muslim

    • aemoreira81

      Not for the reason you think. Normally, when one claims another to be a spouse, that must be corroborated by the country in which the ceremony was performed…which is standard operating procedure (this is a routine verification). The problem here is that Sudan refuses to recognize the marriage. That thus leaves DNA testing as the other way to determine if either Martin or Maya Wani are the children of both Daniel Wani and Meriam Ibrahim. Now, one might say: why not just believe Daniel on his say so? I would answer that it would then lower the standard of proof for the determination of a bona fide marriage, opening the door to more fraud.

      • bob smith

        And yet odumbo and the rinos want to permit the legalization of better than 13 million illegals as new Americans? Odumbo has ordered the defense of the law on these illegals be unenforced? Odumbo has the dream act to his credit? Odumbo released five serial killers of anything unislamic for a known and self admitted traitor?

        your attempt at a textbook definition on the matter in the face of odumbo’s actions are wanting at best if not wholly idiotic given the facts of the matter at hand.

      • Porkys2istan

        The hole in your argument is that they could have granted her TEMPORARY residency while they sorted this all out, but instead FORCED her to stay in Sudan where she was vulnerable to islamic abuses.

        IF, it turned out this marriage is a sham (and it MIGHT be) the US could expel her and she could go to the destination of her CHOICE, like Canada, or Europe, or any number of SAFE places.

        There’s a difference between due diligence and vicious indifference.

        • Chavi Beck

          Amazing how your obvious statements sound so profound in the context of this mind-blowingly insane story. Writing my members of congress today.

          • Chavi Beck

            Signed this petition


            But is there another one specifying the parts about

            “…request the U.S. Consulate to issue Meriam an emergency travel document called a Significant Public Benefit Parole. Second, Buwalda said that Congress should be urged to pass a Private Bill granting immediate U.S. citizenship to Meriam Yahya Ibrahim.”


            Any helpful reader response will be appreciated.

          • faithmcdonnell

            Hi Chavi Beck: I do not know if there is a petition specifying these important points, but what we are doing is urging everyone to send a message to their Members of Congress to do this very thing. A website has JUST been launched that is a cooperative effort between all groups that are seeking to work together to help Meriam and her family. That website enables you to easily find your Reps and Senators and send them a message about Meriam.

  • Donald J DaCosta

    I sent the following to,
    Feel free to copy or compose your own.

    “The Case of Mariam is neither religious nor political, It is Legal.” While
    this might silence people in the Sudan it only reinforces the outrage embodied in the treatment of this woman, her children and her husband by any standard of human decency you can conjure up. And your claim that this is a “legal” issue, as if this insulates you and prevents accusations of the religious intolerance and brutality inherent in your Islamic faith and that your position has no political motivation, defies credulity.

    However you’d like to spin this case it is yet another that has demonstrated
    to a befuddled and disbelieving world the brutality inherent in Islam, a faith that fully encompasses the judicial system you claim is an independent entity. And this statement by you that “freedom of choice is the cornerstone of both Islam and Christianity is total obfuscation; a blatant exercise in Taqiyya. Freedom of choice has absolutely no place in Islam, a religion that demands all its proponents strive for and achieve dominance throughout the world, as they subjugate or murder all who do not submit to inferior status and pay the Jizya. a task they’ve been at for over 14 centuries.

    Given Sudan’s “independent judiciary” and treatment of Mariam, or whatever name you choose to call her, how are Muslims contemplating apostasy or conversion to another religious belief made to feel free to make that choice? Like much of the double speak inherent in Muslim proclamations any Muslim is free to make their choice………if they’re prepared to suffer the consequences.

    Prove your tolerance, mercy, concern and your proclaimed dedication to freedom of choice by immediately releasing this woman and her offspring from the inhuman conditions she is being forced to endure because of a so called independent judiciary. How does that proclamation relieve you from responsibility here and how is the world supposed to shrug their shoulders and ignore the horror this woman and her children are being forced to endure? Because of an independent judiciary? Please!

  • wileyvet

    Where is Lord Kitchener when you need him?

  • DogmaelJones1

    I sent this email to the White House:

    Dear Golfer-in-Chief:

    When you take a rest from your nine-irons and Michelle the Moocher stops feeding her face, are you going to bother doing anything for Dr. Meriam Yahya Ibrahim, the wife of an American citizen, Daniel Wani, a naturalized U.S. citizen? Meriam, as you may well don’t want to know, has been arrested in Khartoum, the Sudan, and has been shackled to a wall for weeks, because she married a Christian. She gave birth to her second child while shackled on a filthy prison floor, where her two-year-old son is also living. When she has finished nursing her new child, she is to be submitted to 100 lashes, and then hanged as an apostate from Islam. I know you, our wussy commander-in-chief, prefer to give Muslims all the breaks, and prefer to exchange a worthless American traitor for five high-level Gitmo prisoners who promise to return to killing Americans, but Meriam is black, and a Christian, and I thought at first that might count for something with you. But, apparently not, so perhaps that doesn’t qualify her for help. Her husband, Daniel, is confined to a wheelchair with muscular dystrophy, but was arrested as well, and had to post bail to get out of jail. Our embassy in Khartoum has offered no advice or assistance, and has rebuffed calls to help him and his wife. Is that per your personal instructions? I’m betting it is. You hate our own country and seem to be doing your best to disgrace it. This is just another episode in your sorry, scandal –ridden, shameful career as a pretend President of the United States.

  • AlgorithmicAnalyst

    Tell the G-I-C that she will vote for the demos!

  • BagLady

    It will all turn out OK eventually. A deal here a dollar there and the couple will be reunited in the US with much applause. Timing and political advantage are far more important than the lot of this one family suffering alongside those many many abused families that struggle everywhere under the fist of their ‘approved’ governments..

    • Chavi Beck

      Difference is, this is an American citizen we’re talking about. The US government can’t protect every human being on the planet from oppression by foreign criminal governments, but it can protect US citizens, or at least do its darnedest. In fact that is its job.

  • jani

    sudan lawyers polices prime minister and preident is pure evil devil and kill inncoent people .sudan is very stupid and very low educated

  • tk-atty

    Truth Seeker is right. They will trade 5 of the worst Terrorist for another American jihadist traitor, but they won’t bring home a “Muslim Christian” just because of that fact. She is a Christian! Obama is a HUGE MUSLIM and is causing all this chaos to help bring jihad here.