October 13, 2009
Judge to Order Christian Convert to Return to Ohio
Rifqa Bary ran away to Florida, saying she believed her Muslim family would harm her for converting to Christianity.
A judge in Orlando said today that he plans to send Rifqa Bary back to Ohio. Bary, a 17-year-old who fled to Florida because she believes her Muslim family would physically harm her for converting to Christianity.
Florida police found no evidence that her family would harm her and her mother's evangelical lawyer believed her Sri Lankan parents were right. Bary left for Florida on a bus in July to stay with husband and wife pastors she met through a prayer group on Facebook.
The judge said today that her parents must provide immigration paperwork and that she can continue her education through a Florida online school. A representative from the children's services in Ohio said a foster home has been identified for Rifqa in that state, according to the Orlando Sentinel. The Columbus Dispatch reports that the judge said he expects Bary to return to Ohio by October 27.