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Gov. Official: Manning Being "Mistreated"

Gov. Official: Manning Being "Mistreated"

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A spokesman for the State Department is publicly criticizing the Pentagon for its handling of Pvt. Bradley Manning, the soldier who allegedly leaked U.S. embassy cables to the Web operation WikiLeaks.

P.J. Crowley, an assistant secretary for public affairs, said Manning has been "mistreated" while staying in the brig at the Quantico Marine Corps base in Quantico, Va.

"What is being done to Bradley Manning is ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid on the part of the Department of Defense," Crowley said at a Massachusetts Institute of Technology seminar in Boston, according to the U.K. paper The Guardian.

President Barack Obama, however, said during a press briefing Friday that Manning's treatment was no different from that of anyone else being held in a brig.

"I have asked the Pentagon whether or not the the procedures that have been taken in terms of his condition are appropriate and are meeting our basic standards," Obama said. "They assure me that they are."

Manning, who is gay, said in December that his conditions were harsh. He is being held under under "maximum custody," with severe restrictions on basic tasks and functions of life, including sleep. According to The Guardian, he is also placed in solitary confinement in his cell 23 hours a day and is stripped naked nightly.

Manning could face the death penalty for the numerous charges against him, including sharing government secrets with an unauthorized party and aiding the enemy.

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Gov. Official: Manning Being "Mistreated"

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