A petition to have the gay US soldier accused of leaking large numbers of secret documents to Wikileaks, Bradley Manning, awarded the Nobel Peace Prize this year, has reached almost 100,000 signatures.

Back in March, it was announced that Manning had been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. While the secret committee which decides on who wins the prize doesn’t disclose nominations, those nominating can do so.

The petition on RootsAction had reached 95,862 signatures at time of publication. 

It reads: “No individual has done more to push back against what Martin Luther King Jr. called ‘the madness of militarism’ than Bradley Manning. And right now, remaining in prison and facing relentless prosecution by the U.S. government, no one is more in need of the Nobel Peace Prize.”

Manning had previously claimed that he was bullied for being gay during his time in the US Army.

In May 2011, human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell described Manning as a “gay hero” and a “human rights defender”.

Last year, four Nobel Prize winners, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Iranian activist Shirin Ebadi, released a joint statement decrying violence against LGBT people, and calling on people around the world to support gay rights.

The committee received a record 259 nominations for this year’s Nobel Peace Prize.

After being in captivity for 1,100 days, Manning headed to Fort Meade to face trial last month, where his defence argued that he was young and naive when he shared the documents.

Military prosecutors said he “systematically harvested” secret documents to share with anti-secrecy site Wikileaks.