Chelsea Manning will walk from a male military prison in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, on 17 May, almost seven years to the day since she was arrested in a base outside Baghdad for offenses relating to the leaking of a vast trove of US state secrets to the website WikiLeaks.
Freedom Press statement We are elated that President Obama has officially commuted the unjust thirty-five year prison sentence of brave whistleblower Chelsea Manning. She will now walk free on May 17th, instead of 2045.
BREAKING: President Barack Obama commutes sentence of Chelsea Manning, who leaked Army documents and is serving 35 years.
— The Associated Press (@AP) January 17, 2017
It’s hard to quantify the suffering that was forced upon Chelsea for her “crime” of informing the American public about what its government does behind closed doors. She was tortured in pre-trial confinement, given a sentence orders of magnitude higher than any other leaker in history, punished more for trivial rule violations, and then put in solitary confinement for attempting suicide.
Reminder: a commutation can not be reversed by a future president. Chelsea will walk out of Fort Leavenworth a free woman on May 17th, 2017.
— Free All Whistleblowers #AbolishICE (@PardonManning) January 18, 2017
Today, we celebrate this act of mercy by President Obama. He did the right thing and he should be commended. As Manning’s attorney at the ACLU, Chase Strangio, said today: “This move could quite literally save Chelsea’s life, and we are all better off knowing that Chelsea Manning will walk out of prison a free woman, dedicated to making the world a better place and fighting for justice for so many.”