Partner of Guardian Journalist Glenn Greenwald Detained in London, Because Terrorism
The partner of a journalist who received leaked National Security Agency information was detained at London's Heathrow Airport for more than eight hours Sunday.
David Miranda, the partner of Glenn Greenwald, a reporter for The Guardian, was kept at the London airport under Terrorism Act's Schedule 7 law, which allows authorities to hold people at border crossings in the name of counterterrorism. Miranda was held for almost nine hours total, the maximum allowed under the law. According to Britain's Home Office, 97 percent of those detaind under the law are released within one hour. Less than one-tenth of one percent are held beyond six hours.
The United States recieved advanced notice of that Miranda would be held, though according to the White House, “This was a decision that was made by the British government without the involvement and not at the request of the United States government...It’s as simple as that.”
Miranda's partner, Greenwald, has of course received and published information about the NSA's electronic spying practices and the surveillance tactics of Britain's Government Communication Headquarters, provided by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
Miranda was detained en route from Germany to his home in Brazil. During his time in Germany, he'd had stayed with Laura Poitras, an American filmmaker who worked with Greenwald on the NSA story, and passed along documents pertaining to the NSA investigation. When Miranda was stopped, his electronics — including a cell phone, laptop and thumb drives containing documents passed between Poitras and Greenwald — were reportedly confiscated and not returned.
Greenwald believes that the detention was an intimidation tactic aimed at preventing him and other journalists from moving forward with similar stories. According to Greenwald, during the interrogation, Miranda was asked virtually nothing about his association with any terror organizations but instead questioned about NSA reporting and the data contained on his electronic devices.
Here's a picture of the (normally) happy couple. (Miranda is on the left, Greenwald right.)
(Image: The Telegraph)
The stop has prompted outrage and calls for explanation from Brazil and British lawmakers like Keith Vaz, the chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee.