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Judge in court-martial of gay US Army soldier reaches a decision

Judge in court-martial of gay US Army soldier reaches a decision

The military judge in the court-martial of gay US Army Pfc. Bradley Manning announced she has made a verdict, which will be made handed down on Tuesday (30 July).

Manning is charged with leaking approximately 700,000 confidential documents to Wikileaks.

As reported by NBC News, Army Col. Denise Lind, will  present her verdict in a courtroom at Fort Meade, Maryland.

The intelligence analyst faces 21 charges, the most serious is ‘aiding the enemy.’ If found guilty of this count, the 25-year-old could spend the rest of his life behind bars.

In February, he pleaded guilty to 10 charges. With that plea, he faces 20 years in jail.

‘I believed if the public, particularly the American public, could see this it could spark a debate on the military and our foreign policy in general [that] might cause society to reconsider the need to engage in counter-terrorism while ignoring the human situation of the people we engaged with every day,’  Manning said in his mid-winter statement.

In closing arguments last week, the prosecution called the defendant a traitor who aided Al-Qaida.

Manning’s lead attorney countered by describing his client as ‘a young naive, but good-intentioned soldier who had human life and his humanist beliefs centered to his decision.’

As reported by NBC, Wikileaks founder Julian Assange said last week if Manning is found guilty of aiding the enemy it will be ‘the end of national security journalism in the United States.’

The sentencing phase of the trial is set to begin on 31 July.

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