Partner of Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald gives his first interview on nine-hour interrogation at Heathrow airport
© Ricardo Moraes/Reuters
Journalist Glenn Greenwald, left, walks with his partner, David Miranda, in Rio de Janeiro's International Airport. U.K. authorities detained Miranda Sunday as he passed through London's Heathrow Airport. Greenwald has close links to Edward Snowden, the former U.S. spy agency contractor who has been granted asylum by Russia
, the partner of the Guardian journalist who broke stories of mass surveillance by the US National Security
Agency, has accused Britain of a "total abuse of power" for interrogating him for almost nine hours at Heathrow
under the Terrorism Act.
In his first interview since returning to his home in Rio de Janeiro early on Monday, Miranda said the authorities in the UK had pandered to the US in trying to intimidate him and force him to reveal the passwords to his computer and mobile phone.
"They were threatening me all the time and saying I would be put in jail if I didn't co-operate," said Miranda. "They treated me like I was a criminal or someone about to attack the UK ... It was exhausting and frustrating, but I knew I wasn't doing anything wrong."
Miranda - a Brazilian national who lives with Greenwald in Rio - was held for the maximum time permitted under schedule seven of the Terrorism Act 2000 which allows officers to stop, search and question individuals at airports, ports and border areas.
During that time, he said, he was not allowed to call his partner, who is a qualified lawyer in the US, nor was he given an interpreter, despite being promised one because he felt uncomfortable speaking in a second language.
"I was in a different country with different laws, in a room with seven agents coming and going who kept asking me questions. I thought anything could happen. I thought I might be detained for a very long time," he said.
He was on his way back from Berlin, where he was ferrying materials between Greenwald and Laura Poitras, the US film-maker who has also been working on stories related to the NSA
files released by US whistle-blower Edward Snowden.