White House was given ‘heads-up’ over David Miranda detention in UK

From The Guardian UK:  http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/19/white-house-david-miranda-heads-up

US says it did not sanction holding Glenn Greenwald’s partner at Heathrow, but was told his name was on passenger list

, and in New York
theguardian.com, Monday 19 August 2013

Britain was facing intense pressure on Monday to give a detailed explanation of the decision to detain the partner of the Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald after the White House confirmed that it was given a “heads-up” before David Miranda was taken into custody for nine hours at Heathrow.

As the UK’s anti-terror legislation watchdog called for a radical overhaul of the laws that allowed police to confiscate Miranda’s electronic equipment, the US distanced itself from the action by saying that British authorities took the decision to detain him.

The detailed intervention by the White House will put pressure on Downing Street which declined to comment on the detention of Miranda on the grounds that it was an operational matter, adding that the Metropolitan police would decide whether its officers had acted in a proportionate manner.

The No 10 position was immediately challenged by David Anderson QC, the independent reviewer of terrorism legislation, who described the detention as unusual, and said that decisions about the proportionality were not ultimately for the police.

He told BBC Radio 4’s The World at One: “The police, I’m sure, do their best. But at the end of the day there is the Independent Police Complaints Commission, which can look into the exercise of this power, there are the courts and there is my function.”

The prospect of an investigation by the IPCC is likely to have been enhanced by the disclosure that the US authorities were given advanced notice of Miranda’s detention after his name appeared on a passenger manifest. Miranda was detained at Heathrow airport on Sunday morning as he flew home from Berlin to Rio de Janeiro where he lives with his partner Greenwald.

During his trip to Berlin, Miranda visited Laura Poitras, the US film-maker who has been working with Greenwald and the Guardian. The Guardian paid for Miranda’s flights. Miranda is not a Guardian employee but often assists Greenwald in his work.

Continue reading at:  http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/19/white-house-david-miranda-heads-up

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