Guardian newspaper warns of press threats over Snowden
Tuesday, August 20, 2013 - 01:28
Aug. 20 - The Guardian newspaper says British authorities forced it to destroy materials leaked by Edward Snowden, while the government defended the move. Lindsey Parietti reports.
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Press freedoms are under threat from the British government, warns this column in the Guardian newspaper.
Editor Alan Rusbridger says British authorities threatened the paper with legal action unless it destroyed materials obtained from ex-CIA contractor Edward Snowden.
He called the censorship a "pointless" move that would not prevent further reporting on U.S. and British surveillance programmes.
Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald was the first to publish U.S. and British intelligence secrets leaked by Snowden, the former U.S. National Security Agency contractor who is wanted in the United States and has found temporary asylum in Russia.
On Sunday, UK authorities used an anti-terroism law to detain and interrogate his Brazilian partner David Miranda for nine hours at Heathrow Airport.
Minister of Justice Damian Green has defended the move.
SOUNDBITE (English) UK JUSTICE MINISTER DAMIAN GREEN, SAYING:
"The Metropolitan Police were acting as they do under the law. That the law is there to protect us from anything that will increase the dangers of terrorism and because these powers are extensive we have an independent investigator. He is talking to the Metropolitan police later today and I suggest we all wait and see what he has to say."
A U.S. security official told Reuters that Miranda was detained as a signal that the British government was serious about shutting down the leaks.
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