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ICC Note:

Presidents of the European Commission, European Council and European Parliament joined religious leaders in issuing a statement condemning Sudan’s sentencing to death a mother of two and wife to an American citizen for her Christian faith. The statement joins still growing international outcry over Meriam’s conviction of and sentencing for adultery and apostasy, in this case the crime of leaving Islam. Learn everything you need to know regarding Meriam’s case here.

06/11/2014 Brussels (allAfrica) – The President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Council Herman van Rompuy and the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz, together with all religious leaders participating at this year’s high-level meeting express their deepest dismay and concern with the fate of Mrs Meriam Yahya Ibrahim, who has been sentenced to a hundred lashes and sentenced to death by hanging on charges of apostasy and adultery.

She recently gave birth to a baby girl while in prison. The above mentioned Presidents of EU institutions as well as all religious leaders present at the high-level meeting which include Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Sikhs and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, underline Sudan’s international obligation to protect the freedom of religion and belief and unanimously call upon the responsible Sudanese authorities and appeal courts to revoke this inhumane verdict and release Mrs Meriam with the utmost urgency.

The participants in today’s meeting welcome the fact that the Court of Appeal has accepted the appeal and demand that the Sudanese government – in line with universal human rights – to repeal any legal provisions that penalise or discriminate against individuals for their religious beliefs or for changing their religion or beliefs or for inducing others to change a religion or belief, especially when cases of apostasy, heterodoxy, or conversion are punishable by death.

This is in line with Sudan being privy to the UN charter on Human Rights.

Freedom of Religion and belief is a universal human right that is valued highly by the European Union and needs to be protected everywhere and for everyone. To underline the Union’s strong commitment to the protection of freedom of religion and belief, the European Union in June 2013 adopted Guidelines on the promotion and protection of freedom of religion or belief.

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