Mainstream Media Breaks Silence, Finally

The Guardian today states that “Manning is a UK citizen by descent from his Welsh mother, Susan.” Amnesty International’s UK Director, Kate Allen, is cited as saying: “His Welsh parentage means the UK government should demand that his ‘maximum custody’ status does not impair his ability to defend himself, and we would also like to see Foreign Office officials visiting him just as they would any other British person detained overseas and potentially facing trial on very serious charges.”

It has now been established, for the record, that Bradley Manning is entitled to all the support available to UK citizens held in custody abroad. The UK Government must now acknowledge its obligations towards Bradley and make all possible efforts to ensure that he receives due process in the United States. It is time now for everyone concerned about Bradley’s situation to apply pressure on the UK Government to take up his case with the American authorities.

In two weeks, we have taken this matter from nowhere to the front page of the Guardian. Everyone who has read this blog – all 15,000 of you – has played a part in this achievement and many more will be hearing this information for the very first time today. Bradley Manning is a UK citizen. Finally putting this on the record is an achievement in itself. However, there is a very great deal more to do.

British MPs need to hear from their constituents on this issue. Understand that everything we do now has some prospect of improving the conditions in which Bradley is held. If you care about this case – and the fact you’re here at all suggests that you do – please write to your MP and make your opinions heard. You can find their contact details here. When you hear back from them, please let me know.

Bradley Manning

(Thanks to @Knowledgeempire for the FCO documentation)

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18 responses to “Mainstream Media Breaks Silence, Finally

  1. I was in a similar citizenship situation. I am born and raised in the US. Now live in UK and am Citizen by Descent, because my mother is from UK. However I had to formally register and take an oath (and pay nearly £600) as it was my mother and not my father. It wasn’t automatically recognised. This was just over a year ago, so I’m not sure if laws have changed significantly since then (I believe they abolished the fees). I wonder if Manning has actually registered as a citizen (or should do so now).

    • Bradley attended school in the UK and took GCSEs here, so his citizenship has been recognised.

      • Naomi – there’s a public meeting in London on Saturday to raise awareness of Bradley Manning’s situation, linking with Julian Assange’s likely fate. Your group only seems to have gone public very recently, but it would be great if you could get a speaker to this event. If there’s any chance someone might be willing to come and speak (3pm Sat 5 Feb) please let me know asap so I can send you further details. Cheers.

  2. Came to this blog via today’s Guardian report and will be writing to my MP today. Shocked at the reported conditions in which Bradley Manning is being held, and shocked by UK govt inaction/silence.

    • This was my exact reaction too, the only difference being that I learned about both a little earlier than you, in Glenn Greenwald’s salon.com article of 15th Dec. Now that the point has been made, I promise you that letters to MPs WILL make an impact. Thank you so much for doing this, and please do let me know what kind of response you get. Naomi

  3. Great to hear someone’s started this group!

    I’ve been blogging regularly about Bradley Manning and the UK press coverage about him…

    http://www.fagburn.com/2011/02/bradley-manning-will-uk-intervene.html

  4. Michael Stephenson

    I’ve E mailed my MP James Wharton.
    If foreign nationals residing in the UK suspected of being associated with terrorist organisations (and likely were in some cases) deserve advocacy by the British government, Bradley Manning as a son of Wales certainly should receive the same support.

  5. Michael Stephenson

    You’ve been linked to by aol, I should expect to see a wave of traffic shortly from US readers.
    http://www.aolnews.com/2011/02/02/rights-activists-decry-treatment-of-imprisoned-wikileaks-suspect/

  6. I’ve emailed MP Mark Lazarowicz. He replied he will raise the matter with the UK Foreign Secretary.

  7. Thanks for your advocacy and support. Please put me on your mailing list.

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