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.
(Thanks to @Knowledgeempire for the FCO documentation)