US: Chelsea Manning may be transferred to civilian prison to allow her to transition

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Transgender Wikileaks soldier Chelsea Manning may be transferred to a civilian prison, to allow her access to hormone therapy.

The former US Army analyst,  who came out as transgender last August, is currently serving a 35-year sentence in military prison Fort Leavenworth, for leaking files to Wikilieaks,

As transgender people are banned from serving in the military, the prison had previously declined her access to hormones which would aid her transition, leading to a lawsuit.

Associated Press reported today that officials from the Pentagon are finally considering the request to allow her to undergo treatment in a civilian prison.

Rear Admiral John Kirby, a Pentagon spokesman, said: “No decision to transfer Private Manning to a civilian detention facility has been made, and any such decision will, of course, properly balance the soldier’s medical needs with our obligation to ensure Private Manning remains behind bars.”

He also said a request to assess “potential treatment options for inmates diagnosed with gender dysphoria” had been approved by Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel.

Hagel said at the weekend that he was “open” to finally allowing trans people to serve in the military.

He had said: “The issue of transgender is a bit more complicated because it has a medical component to it.

“These issues require medical attention. Austere locations where we put our men and women in many cases don’t always provide that kind of opportunity

“I do think it continually should be reviewed. I’m open to that, by the way.”

In April, Manning won another legal battle, convincing a Kansas court to allow her to legally change her name to Chelsea Elizabeth Manning.