NSA

British Government Stands by Detention of David Miranda

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The British government on Tuesday defended the Heathrow Airport detention of the partner of a journalist who has written stories based on leaks from former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, saying it was right to stop anyone suspected of possessing "highly sensitive stolen information that would help terrorism."

A lawyer said the detained man, David Miranda, had begun legal action against the government, calling his detention unlawful and seeking assurances that British officials would not share the "sensitive, confidential journalistic material" seized from Miranda with anyone else.

Police used a contentious anti-terrorism law to detain Miranda, the civil partner of Guardian newspaper journalist Glenn Greenwald, on Sunday. Greenwald has published stories about U.S. and British surveillance programs based on documents leaked by Snowden, who has been granted temporary asylum in Russia.