'Huge black eye' for British government
Britain's Home Office on Tuesday defended Miranda's questioning, saying the government and police "have a duty to protect the public and our national security."
"If the police believe that an individual is in possession of highly sensitive stolen information that would help terrorism, then they should act and the law provides them with a framework to do that," it said. "Those who oppose this sort of action need to think about what they are condoning."
In a statement that didn't name Miranda but referred to his detention, the Metropolitan Police called what happened "legally and procedurally sound" and said it came after "a detailed decision-making process."
The statement describes the law under which Miranda was detained as "a key part of our national security capability which is used regularly and carefully by the Metropolitan Police Service to help keep the public safe."
But that's not how Miranda and Greenwald view the law, or at least how it was applied in this case.
Sitting alongside his partner, Greenwald said the detention gave the British government "a huge black eye in the world, (made) them look thuggish and authoritarian (for) interfering in the journalism process (and created) international incidents with the government of Brazil, which is indignant about this."
Greenwald added, "To start detaining people who they think they are reporting on what they're doing under terrorism laws, that is as dangerous and oppressive as it gets."
Miranda, who didn't have an interpreter on hand during his detention despite English being a second language for him, said: "They didn't ask me anything about terrorism, not one question."
He added, "They were just telling me: 'If you don't answer this, you are going to jail.'"
Greenwald said the entire episode was designed to intimidate him and other investigative journalists from using classified information and digging into stories critical of the British and allied governments. But, he said, it will have the reverse effect on him, making him more determined to carry on.
The seizure of material from Miranda will not stop the newspaper reporting on the story, he added.
"Of course, we have multiple copies of every single thing that we're working on," Greenwald said. "Nobody would ever travel with only one copy of anything."