US court refuses to reject charge against Manning

Bradley Manning is charged with leaking hundreds of thousands of American Government cables to WikiLeaks in 2010.

Washington: A military court has refused to reject a charge that former US Army private first class, Bradley Manning, aided al Qaeda by leaking thousands of files to the whistle-blower website, WikiLeaks.

"The defence motion to dismiss ... is denied," The Telegraph quoted Military Judge Colonel Denise Lind, as saying.

He added that prosecutors could not prove in the trial phase that Manning knew intelligence given to WikiLeaks would reach the enemy hands, and said the court would "provide appropriate motions”.

The ruling is a setback to Manning whose appeals to reduce or dismiss all 22 charges against him have been rejected, The Telegraph reports.

Manning is charged with leaking hundreds of thousands of American Government cables and field reports from Iraq and Afghanistan to WikiLeaks in 2010, in the largest leak of classified documents in the country’s history.

Prosecutors alleged that the leaks aided al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), one of the militant group`s most potent affiliates.

They also accused Manning of downloading over 700,000 classified or confidential files from the military’s Secret Internet Protocol Router Network, or SIPRNet, while serving in the Army’s 10th Mountain Division in Iraq.

Manning also faces charges of stealing US records and wrongfully causing them to be published on the Internet.

He can get a life term if he is convicted at a court-martial in September.

Manning`s lawyer, David Coombs, however, said his client’s actions constituted at most negligence, as he had no intention of providing information to the enemy.


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