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Chelsea Manning Files Appeal After 6 Years in Federal Prison

Chelsea Manning
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The government whistleblower and transgender woman is calling for her 35-year sentence to be reduced.

Chelsea Manning has served six years in federal prison as of this week for leaking government documents.

The former U.S. Army intelligence analyst was arrested on May 27, 2010, on charges of espionage. She was sentenced in 2013 to 35 years.

Manning, who came out as a transgender woman following her arrest, has become a polarizing figure among government watchdogs. She sent more than 700,000 secret documents to WikiLeaks ranging from embassy communiques to military reports from Iraq and Afghanistan--including collateral damage from U.S. military operations.

Many whistleblower advocates have called for her release over the years, claiming that the Obama administration has not lived up to promises of transparency.

Manning filed an appeal of her conviction last week in federal court, where she asked for her sentence to be reduced to 10 years.

She is currently held in Fort Leavenworth prison in Kansas, where transitioning has been difficult. While she has access to medical treatment and hormone therapy, military administrators often take a start-and-stop approach in handling her transition--including last year when they prevented her from growing her hair or keeping copies of The Advocate, Out, and Vanity Fair with Caitlyn Jenner on the cover.

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