‘No regrets’ over Haneef-AFP interview leak

Stephen Keim says he is trying to make sure the public has as much information about the issue as possible.

Haneef is in custody, and has had his visa revoked since being charged with providing support to a terrorist group.

Mr Keim has told Lateline he does not regret the move.

“I felt that it was very important in the first instance to release that document to a journalist, so that the evidence on which that action is being taken is available to the public, so they can conduct that debate on real evidence and not some skewed form of evidence,” he said.

Mr Keim says the Government is in no position to criticise his actions.

“We have the action taken against my client under the Immigration Act which declares him of being such bad character that he must be deported even if he’s found innocent of the offence,” he said.

“Now how can the Government be concerned about what I’ve done, on the one hand, and not be concerned about what the Immigration Minister has done on the other?”

Indian PM comments

The Press Trust of India reports Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh says Australia should provide all proper legal safeguards to Mr Haneef.

“They ought to extend all the facilities within the law and the rights he is entitled to,” he said.

Dr Singh’s statement comes a day after India summoned Australia’s top diplomat in New Delhi to convey its “concern” over the treatment of Haneef, charged in connection with failed car bomb attacks in Britain last month.

He said the Indian Government was in touch with Australian authorities over the issue.

But Australian Prime Minister John Howard has tried to play down the risk of a diplomatic confrontation.

“I don’t see any rift developing in relation to this matter,” Mr Howard told reporters.