THE UN’S SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR on torture has criticised the US government for failing to allow him meet privately with Bradley Manning, the US soldier being detained on suspicion of providing classified military information to WikiLeaks.
The Guardian reports that Juan Mendez said he was “deeply disappointed and frustrated by the prevarication of the US government” over his attempts to meet with Manning.
Mendez is investigating complaints that Manning is being detained under inhumane conditions, such as being forced to sleep naked and being in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day.
Addressing those concerns, the UN rapporteur said today:
I have since last year on several occasions raised serious concern about the conditions of detention of Mr Manning, who since his arrest in May 2010, has been confined to his cell for 23 hours a day at the Marine Corps Brig, Quantico, Virginia. I have also urged the authorities to ensure his physical and mental integrity.
Earlier this year, President Obama said he was satisifed by Pentagon assurances that the conditions of Manning’s detention met with basic standards.
In March, Hillary Clinton’s spokesperson PJ Crowley resigned after publicly criticising Manning’s treatment in prison.