Meriam Ibrahim, left, and her husband, Daniel Wani, of Sudan, are greeted by family and friends shortly after arriving in Manchester, N.H., Thursday, July 31, 2014. Ibrahim, who refused to recant her Christian faith in the face of a death sentence that was later overturned, will make their new home in New Hampshire. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Sudanese family 'very tired,' thankful for freedom

More Photos

See all photos

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) -- The husband of a Sudanese woman who refused to recant her Christian faith in the face of a death sentence said Friday the family is healthy but "very tired" and grateful for the global efforts to free his wife.

Meriam Ibrahim flew from Rome with her husband, Daniel Wani, and two children to Philadelphia and ultimately on to New Hampshire. Wani has family in Manchester, where they will make their new home.

In a statement issued through a spokesman Friday afternoon, Wani thanked members of Congress, human rights organizations, diplomats and lawyers who helped free Ibrahim.

"Everyone is in good health but are very tired," Wani said.

The family is planning to address the media next week after taking the weekend to rest.

Ibrahim had been sentenced to death over charges of apostasy, the abandonment of a religion. Her father was Muslim, and her mother was an Orthodox Christian. She married Wani, a Christian from southern Sudan, in 2011. Muslim women in Sudan are prohibited from marrying non-Muslims, and children must follow their fathers' religions.

Sudan initially blocked Ibrahim from leaving the country even after its highest court overturned her death sentence in June. The family took refuge at the U.S. embassy in Khartoum.

Daniel Wani was granted U.S. citizenship when he fled to the United States as a child to escape civil war, but he later returned and was a citizen of South Sudan.

Manchester, a city of 110,000 residents about 50 miles north of Boston, is northern New England's largest city and has been a magnet for immigrants and refugees for decades. There are about 500 Sudanese living in the city, which is just north of the Massachusetts state line.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Top Stories

  • Live: Seahawks Chat
    Join 710 ESPN Seattle for a live chat during the Seahawks game

  • Holiday Map
    Find Christmas trees, Santa photos, and lights on the MyNorthwest Holiday Map
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus
Sign up for breaking news e-mail alerts from MyNorthwest.com
In the community
Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.