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Published: Thursday May 15, 2014 MYT 6:35:24 PM
Updated: Thursday May 15, 2014 MYT 6:36:32 PM

Sudanese woman sentenced to death for converting to Christianity

KHARTOUM (Reuters) - A Sudanese court has sentenced a 27-year-old woman to death for converting to Christianity, judicial sources said.

Mariam Yahya Ibrahim had been ordered to abandon her newly adopted Christian faith and return to Islam. She had also been charged with adultery for marrying a Christian man.

Judge Abbas al Khalifa asked Ibrahim whether she would return to Islam. After she said "I am a Christian" the death sentence was handed down, the judicial sources said.

Outside the court, about 50 people held up signs that read "Freedom of Religion", while some Islamists celebrated the ruling, chanting "God is Greatest".

Young Sudanese university students have mounted a series of protests near Khartoum University in recent weeks asking for an end to human rights abuses, more freedoms and better social and economic conditions.

Western embassies and Sudanese activists have condemned what they said were human rights abuses and called on the Sudanese Islamist-led government to respect freedom of faith.

(Writing by Michael Georgy; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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