Bradley Manning treatment in custody concerns MEPs

Open letter to US authorities raises human rights fears and urges access for UN special rapporteur on torture to whistleblower

• The open letter by the 54 MEPs

, guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 29 November 2011

Bradley Manning

Bradley Manning, the US soldier suspected of leaking classified information, is due to make his first court appearance on 16 December. Photograph: AP

More than 50 members of the European parliament have signed an open letter to the US government raising concerns about the treatment of Bradley Manning, the US soldier in military detention for allegedly leaking classified US documents to the whistleblowing site WikiLeaks.

The call on the US government comes before a pre-trial hearing – Manning’s first appearance in court – which begins on 16 December.

The MEPs said internal investigations into Manning’s treatment in custody, which included solitary confinement for up to 23 hours a day, inspections by officers every five minutes from 5am onwards and removal of his clothes, had been marred by “clear conflicts of interest”.

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