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Out of prison, Chelsea Manning shares her first picture as transgender woman

Out of prison, Chelsea Manning shares her first picture as transgender woman – The photo replaced an old Twitter profile picture that had shown Manning in her previous incarnation as Bradley Manning, a male soldier in military uniform and beret.

On her release, Chelsea Manning vowed to put her previous life behind her and said she was “excited” about the future. (Twitter)

Chelsea Manning, the transgender US Army soldier responsible for a massive leak of classified material, shared a photo of herself for the first time since she was released from prison.

The portrait, which Manning shared on her Twitter and Instagram accounts @xychelsea87, shows the 29-year old in a short-cropped hair wearing red lipstick and a dark deep-V-neck sweater. She included the caption: “Okay, so here I am everyone!! #HelloWorld”

Manning was released from a U.S. military prison on Wednesday, seven years after being arrested for passing secrets to WikiLeaks in the largest breach of classified information in U.S. history.

Manning was convicted by court-martial in 2013 of espionage and other offences for furnishing more than 700,000 documents, videos, diplomatic cables and battlefield accounts to WikiLeaks, an international organisation that publishes such information from anonymous sources, while she was an intelligence analyst in Iraq.

Manning served seven years, and twice tried to take her own life last year alone. Former US President Barack Obama commuted her sentence just days before he left office in January.

Her social media posts immediately after her release showed people clinking champagne glasses with the caption, “Here’s to a new beginning.”

Another post showed a single slice of pepperoni pizza on a plate, with the words “So, I’m already enjoying my first hot, greasy pizza,” followed by a smiley-face emoticon.

Many on social media congratulated Manning’s newfound freedom, with her post receiving 33,000 likes and 7,600 retweets on Thursday.

In a statement to ABC news, Manning said: “As I rebuild my life, I remind myself not to relive the past. The past will always affect me and I will keep that in mind while remembering that how it played out is only my starting point, not my final destination.”

(With Agency Inputs)