U.S. Works for Meriam Ibrahim Exit in Sudan Death Row Case

IbrahimKHARTOUM, SUDAN (ANS) — The U.S. says it is working with Sudan to ensure a woman freed from death row can leave the country, after she was detained at Khartoum airport. According to a story by the BBC, Meriam Ibrahim’s lawyer says she and her husband are being questioned over their travel documents. She was sentenced in May to hang for renouncing Islam – sparking an outcry – but was released from jail on Monday. Ibrahim’s husband is a Christian from South Sudan. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said Sudan’s government had given assurances that Ibrahim and her family were safe.

Ibrahim was released from Omdurman women’s prison after state media announced that the Supreme Court had annulled the sentence. She had spent six months in a jail cell, sentenced to execution by hanging for abandoning Islam, despite her assertions that she was raised a Christian by her Ethiopian Orthodox mother after her Muslim father left. The May 15 sentence also included 100 lashes for adultery related to her marriage to Wani, a Christian.

Israel Searches for Three Missing Teens in Palestinian Territories

HEBRON, WEST BANK (ANS) — The Israeli army has arrested about 80 Palestinians as it intensifies its search for three suspected kidnapped teenagers, triggering fears of a broader crackdown. A story by Gregg Carlstrom for Al Jazeera America reported that the Israelis disappeared late Thursday night after leaving their religious school in Kfar Etzion, a settlement between Jerusalem and Hebron considered illegal under international law. Security sources said the missing yeshiva students Gilad Shaar, Eyal Yifrach and Naftall Frankel, aged 16 to 19, were probably trying to hitchhike to their homes in central Israel and the West Bank.
Hundreds of Israeli soldiers have been deployed in the search. Drones and surveillance balloons could also be seen hovering over Hebron. Al Jazeera said two previously unknown groups, “Islamic State” and the “Brigade of the Free Men of Hebron,” have issued notices claiming responsibility for the suspected kidnappings. In a press conference on Saturday night, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated that he holds the Palestinian Authority responsible for the teenagers’ disappearance. One of the three teenagers is a U.S. citizen, and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called Abbas to discuss the case on Friday night.

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