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Chelsea Manning attempted suicide a second time in October while in solitary confinement

Meka Beresford November 5, 2016

Chelsea Manning attempted suicide a second time last month whilst in solitary confinement, a punishment for the first attempt at ending her life in July.

Chase Strangio, an American Civil Liberties Union lawyer representing Ms Manning confirmed the attempt after she gave a statement over the phone to a member of her volunteer support network.

The New York Times reported that Mr. Strangio said Manning has experienced “demoralising and destabilising assaults on her health and her humanity.”

“I worry about the sustainability of her current conditions and her ability to keep fighting under these relentless abuses,” he added.

Strangio is currently representing Ms. Manning in a lawsuit which accuses the military of refusing to adequately treat her gender dysphoria.

Ms. Manning has been informed that the Army will hold another disciplinary hearing on the second attempted suicide, with the potential of facing another punishment.

An Army spokesman said he was unable to comment or answer any questions about matters covered by medical information privacy rules.

In her four-page statement, Ms. Manning said she tried to kill herself on the first night of her week in solitary detention.

She was then placed on suicide watch and transferred to a special observation unit called Alpha Tier, where she continued to be held in solitary confinement.

A majority of the statement recounts a series of events that took place in Alpha Tier following her attempt.

The statement says that four people impersonating guards conducted an hour long attack on the prison and they tried to persuade Ms. Manning to escape.

Ms. Manning said that she hid and told the impostors that she knew they were not guards.

A regular shift of guards familiar to Ms. Manning arrived the following morning on October 11th, and “everything returned to normal, except that several correctional specialists were deep cleaning the entirety of Alpha tier with Pine Sol and bleach,” the statement concluded.

Mr. Strangio said that Ms. Manning had described them to him in phone calls and that he “couldn’t comment on any of these experiences because I don’t understand them.

“I am going to visit her later this month due to continuous concerns that she is not getting the health care she needs,” he added.

Since her suicide attempt in October, Ms. Manning, has been released from the Alpha Tier unit to the general inmate population and once again has the right to receive mail and make phone calls.

Two members of the support network said Ms. Manning had told them that she continued to see the attackers who posed as guards around the prison until Oct. 27.

Ms. Manning’s 35-year sentence is the longest ever imposed for providing government secrets to the public.

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