Haneef inquiry may jeopardise investigation: Pyne

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Sydney, Feb 24: A public inquiry into the Australian Federal Police's investigations in the Indian doctor Mohammad Haneef's case may jeopardise the probe and risk exposing sensitive information, an Opposition spokesman today said. Terming the public inquiry an ''over reaction by a new government'', opposition justice spokesman Christopher Pyne said a closed door probe would be preferable.

''If there is to be an inquiry it should be conducted by the Australian Law Enforcement Integrity Commission. That was set up for this express purpose.'' Mr Pyne insisted the coalition had nothing to fear from an upcoming Haneef inquiry, despite intense criticism of former immigration minister Kevin Andrews' intervention in the case. Mr Andrews made the right judgement by cancelling the Indian doctor's visa, the spokesman said, adding the decision was based on the information available at the time. The court had upheld a judge's earlier decision to reinstate Dr Haneef's work visa in December. ''Even though AFP commissioner Mick Keelty had overstepped the mark when he had called for media reporting of terrorism cases to be curtailed, yet he had opposition's complete support,'' the Australian quoted Mr Pyne as saying.

Mr Keelty last week told a Senate committee the AFP saw no need to change its handling of terrorism investigations despite its role in the bungled Haneef matter.

UNI

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