ARTICLE – Death Penalty against a pregnant Sudanese Christian Woman

Added by Ayesha Noor on 10 juin 2014. · No Comments · Share this Post

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* Article written by Ayesha Noor

Last month, a Sudanese court issued a death sentence and a hundred lashes to an 8-month pregnant Christian woman on account of apostasy and adultery. Both of these punishments are illogical, inhumane and un-Islamic.

According to the Sudanese court, Meriam is a Muslim woman who married a Christian man, therefore committed adultery and became worthy of 100 lashes. She apparently renounced Islam and therefore became worthy of death.

None of this has any merit in Islamic scholarship. In fact Islam stands by her and with her against this abhorrent treatment.

It would help the court to get their facts straight before sentencing an innocent woman to death. Meriam is not Muslim. Period. She was raised by her Christian mother, her Muslim father was nowhere in her upbringing. Therefore, she never recanted Islam. Instead, like any other believer of any faith, upon adulthood she consciously accepted Christianity as her religion. But even if she were Muslim, the holy Quran categorically forbids compulsion in religion (2:257). Islam does not allow any person to issue punishment on the basis of religious choice.

Likewise, Meriam is being lashed on the basis of committing adultery. This one reads more like a bad joke. Right now the media is plastered with her beautiful wedding photograph. A wedding photograph usually confirms that the couple publicly announced their marriage. This is exactly how Islam views marriage. Once a couple is publicly married, no one has the right to question their intimate relationship. But even before her marriage, no one had the right to intervene in her private matters. No person has the right to punish Meriam for her alleged adultery-which I remind you she never committed.

And let’s return to the apostasy issue. For the sake of argument, let’s assume Meriam is an apostate . In that case, she must be set free. The Holy Quran 10:100 is the most conspicuous verse on the subject of apostasy,

« And if thy Lord had enforced His will, surely, all who are on the earth would have believed together. Wilt thou, then, force men to become believers? »

When God declares that He doesn’t force people to believe, how can a Sudanese court assume a responsibility greater than God? In fact this verse specifically condemns forcing anyone to believe in Islam. If the Sudanese courts can quote any example from the Qur’an permitting forced belief that will definitely serve their cause.

However, no such verses exist. Instead, there are at least six more verses in the Qur’an that refute the alleged punishment of apostasy in Islam.

If Meriam Ibrahim’s death sentence were executed, it would be an unjust murder at the hand of an absurd and flawed judicial system. Holy Quran declares: « whosoever killed a person – unless it be for creating disorder in the land, it shall be as if he had killed all mankind. » Now,Meriam, a young mother of a 20-months old is clearly not creating disorder in Sudan. Likewise, killing Meriam would be killing the entire mankind twice, for she is full term
pregnant.

Even during wars, Prophet Muhammad forbade to kill women, let alone pregnant women. He let go of his vehement enemies at the time of the victory of Mecca and established universal freedom of conscience. He pardoned confirmed apostates during his time as a de facto ruler of Medina. Prophet Muhammad protected, respected, and honored women regardless of their faith.

Thus, According to the Quran and the traditions of Prophet Muhammad, Meriam Ibrahim cannot be punished on any account. She is not and adulterer and she is not an apostate. She is a wife and a mother of two and possesses every right to live as a free human being with her husband and children. May her punishment be dismissed and history does not blame Sudanese Islamic Judicial system to be barbaric, inhumane and most of all un-Islamic.

* Ayesha Noor holds a masters’ degree in international economics. She has been published in the New York Times, Washington Post and USA Today. She is also a staff writer for the oldest and longest-running Muslim American periodical.

Quotation :

Ayesha Noor, « Death Penalty against a pregnant Sudanese Christian Woman », in : www.cultures-et-croyances.com, Section English – Articles, June 2014.

Photo Credit : IvoireWeb

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