UN special rapporteur on torture condemns continued incarceration of Chelsea Manning as thousands call for her release

Posted December 31, 2019, 3:29 AM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 30, 2019
Contact: Evan Greer, 978-852-6457, press@fightforthefuture.org

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture just issued an official letter to the US Government calling for the release of Chelsea Manning “without delay,” and condemning her continued incarceration as “an open-ended, progressively severe measure of coercion fulfilling all the constitutive elements of torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.” This is the second time the UN has decried Chelsea’s treatment as torture. 

The condemnation from world human rights leaders comes as thousands of people have already taken action on a new petition effort at FreeChelsea.com, backed by groups like Fight for the Future, Demand Progress, Freedom of the Press Foundation, Daily Kos, Roots Action, Media Alliance, and Defending Rights and Dissent. The groups will deliver the signatures to the judge at the end of January.

Fight for the Future deputy director Evan Greer (she/her) said: “The US government’s treatment of Chelsea Manning amounts to a coordinated campaign of harassment and psychological torture. Coercive confinement is widely seen as a violation of human rights. Congress should ban this practice, and Judge Anthony Trenga should release Chelsea immediately, in accordance with International law and basic human decency. If Chelsea is not immediately released, US lawmakers should launch investigations into her ongoing detention. Individuals who want to support Chelsea should sign the petition and spread the word about FreeChelsea.com.“

Organizations can join the campaign by contacting team@fight for the future.org

The UN rapporteur, Nils Melzner, wrote: “More specifically, the practice of coercive detention appears to be incompatible with the international human rights obligations of the United States under, inter alia, Articles 1, 2, 15 and 16 of the Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT), as wellas under Articles 2, 7 and 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR); ratified by the United States of America in 1994 and 1992 respectively.”