OTR Interviews

Husband of pregnant Christian woman sitting on death row in the Sudan: She's not converting to Islam, they can do whatever they wanna do

American Daniel Wani says his wife will not renounce her Christian faith despite being sentenced to death by a Sudanese court.


This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," May 23, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

ANDREA TANTAROS, 'ON THE RECORD' GUEST HOST: Sentenced to death because she's a Christian. Right now a woman 8 months pregnant is shackled on death row in Sudan. She is sentenced to flogging, then execution. Her alleged crimes refusing to give up her religion and marrying a Christian man. Now, the woman's husband is desperately trying to save his wife's life. He was recently allowed to visit her in prison and he spoke with Greta Van Susteren from Sudan.


GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, 'ON THE RECORD' HOST: How is your wife? What's her condition?

DANIEL WANI, HUSBAND OF MERIAM YAHIA IBRAHIM ISHAG, WHO'S SITTING ON DEATH ROW IN THE SUDAN: She's not good. She is supposed to go to hospital because when I visit her on Thursday, she's telling me that, baby for two days they don't move and also her water is not good. And the baby, my son, also (inaudible)as you know, prison is not a good place.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Now your wife has been sentenced to death to be executed because she is a Christian or married to a Christian. Your 20-month-old son is also in prison with her, right?

WANI: Yes.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Now, you're a Christian, right?

WANI: I'm Christian since I was born.

VAN SUSTEREN: If you were Muslim or if she said she were Muslim would her life be spared.

WANI: Yes. And I don't think she's gonna repent, you know.

VAN SUSTEREN: Are you an American citizen or do you have some residency in America?

WANI: Yeah. Yes. I'm an American citizen. I'm from New Hampshire. Manchester New Hampshire.

VAN SUSTEREN: Is the U.S. Government, our State Department helping new any way?

WANI: No. I don't know. But when the case starts on September I went to the embassy and tried to report the case. But their councilor she said she don't have time. Even she don't want to listen to us. And two time I tried to talk to her but she won't listen. And she say, you know, go to the U.N. your wife is not a -- she's not American. I say I'm American. And she said, Daniel, you have to have the problem, she appeals to do anything. Even my son. She put process for watching the birth, put the process on hold.

VAN SUSTEREN: If your wife loses all of her appeals, when is it that she is likely to be executed?

WANI: After two years. And I hope, I hope she's not going to lose.

VAN SUSTEREN: What is the form of execution in Sudan? Is hanging, stoning what is it?

WANI: Hanging.

VAN SUSTEREN: What's your wife's state of mind as she considers what's happening to her?

WANI: She's not going to convert to Islam. They can do whatever they wanna do. But she's still a Christian. And she is a Christian since she was born.

VAN SUSTEREN: Are you safe? You are a Christian. Are you safe in Sudan? Why is she in prison and you are not?

WANI: Actually, after all the media show my picture, now even I'm in jail, I don't go out. If I'm going somewhere, I have I guess toward vehicle from my house where I'm going you know.

VAN SUSTEREN: What are the conditions in the prison like?

WANI: It's not good really. The condition in prison is not good.

VAN SUSTEREN: How pregnant is she? What month of her pregnancy?

WANI: 8 months.

VAN SUSTEREN: And so, what's gonna happen when the baby is born.

WANI: She's gonna feed the baby for two years. After that they are gonna execute her.

VAN SUSTEREN: So, the whole idea is that she can be a mother to the child for three years but the end of three years.

WANI: Two years.

VAN SUSTEREN: Two years. And at the end of two years they intend to execute her by hanging?

WANI: Yes.

VAN SUSTEREN: What can we do to help you?

WANI: Put a lot of pressure on the Sudan's government. Actually, I want to thank every support from human rights organization all day (inaudible) for supporting me [SIC].