Serving a 35-year-long sentence in a US prison after being convicted of leaking military cables to WikiLeaks, whistleblower Chelsea Manning has now gone on a hunger strike.
Through Chase Stragio of the American Civil Liberties Union, Manning confirmed that she needs help but “not getting any”.
She alleges that she’s being bullied in the prison.
Elijah Nouvelage / Reuters
“I have asked for help time and time again for six years and through five separate confinement locations. My request has only been ignored, delayed, mocked, given trinkets and lip service by the prison, the military, and this administration,” Manning said. The “high tech bullying” Manning refers to includes “the constant, deliberate and overzealous administrative scrutiny by prison and military officials.”
“As of 12:01 am Central Daylight Time on September 9, 2016, and until I am given minimum standards of dignity, respect, and humanity, I shall — refuse to voluntarily cut or shorten my hair in any way; consume any food or drink voluntarily, except for water and currently prescribed medications; and comply with all rules, regulations, laws, and orders that are not related to the two things I have mentioned,” said Manning.
She said that she has submitted a “do not resuscitate” letter which includes any attempts to forcibly cut or shorten her hair or feed her by any means.
“I expect that this ordeal will last for a long time. Quite possibly until my permanent incapacitation or death. I am ready for this,” she said.
Chelsea Manning (as Bradley) being taken out of the court during her trial.
She repeatedly requests the US government to help her “demanding written assurances from the Army she will receive all of the medically prescribed recommendations for her gender dysphoria”. Manning’s lawyers said that she tried to commit suicide on July 5 following which she was charged with several administrative offenses which might result in her entering solitary confinement. Manning was born Bradley, a male, but is undergoing gender transition starting August 2013, when she officially became a female.