The Government has been called upon to intervene in the case of a soldier held in a US jail on suspicion of passing state secrets to WikiLeaks – on the grounds that he is part-British.
Bradley Manning, a private in the US Army, went to school in Haverfordwest, Wales, where his mother still lives.
He has been accused of passing hundreds of thousands of diplomatic cables to the whistleblowing website.
Amnesty International argued that his Welsh parentage meant that the British Government should step in in the wake of reports about the harsh conditions of his detention.
The human rights charity’s director Kate Allen said: “Bradley Manning’s Welsh parentage means that the UK government should be demanding that the conditions of his detention are in line with international standards and that his ‘maximum custody’ status does not impair his ability to defend himself.
“We would also like to see Foreign Office officials visiting him just as they would any other British person detained overseas and potentially facing trial on very serious charges.”
But the Government said it could not comment on Pte Manning’s nationality.
A Foreign Office spokeswoman said: “We can’t release any information on an individual’s nationality unless we have their consent.”
Dual nationals in the country of their other nationality would not normally receive support from the British Government, which would does not tend to get involved in dealings between them and the authorities of the other state.
Manning has been praised by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange as “an unparalleled hero”.