The Russian Foreign Ministry announced today that it is participating in a “quiet diplomacy» with the United States about a possible prisoner exchange involving American basketball star Brittney Greiner.
GKreiner was sentenced in Russia on August 4 to nine years in prison on charges of drug trafficking. US President Joe Biden called the sentencing “unacceptable».
Washington, which claims that Greiner arrested without reasonoffered to be exchanged for Viktor Bout, a Russian arms dealer serving a 25-year prison sentence in the United States.
“Quiet diplomacy is underway and it should pay off if Washington follows suit and doesn’t engage in media propaganda to score points before the election.”said Ivan Nechayev, a spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, referring to the US midterm elections in November.
Washington has offered to swap former arms dealer Victor Booth for Greiner and ex-Marine Paul Willa
The Kremlin has previously announced that US officials are undermining efforts to ensure prisoner exchange choosing the “loudspeaker diplomacy” in this case.
Washington has proposed swapping former arms dealer Victor Bout for Greiner and ex-Marine Paul Whelan, imgs familiar with the matter told Reuters, as reported by the Athens News Agency.
Whelan, who holds American, British, Canadian and Irish passports, was sentenced in 2020 to 16 years in prison on charges of espionage. He denied the accusations.
Greiner, who used medical cannabis in the United States to deal with pain from chronic injuries, was arrested on February 17 at her airport Moscow Sheremetyevo, with vaping cartridges containing hashish oil in her luggage.
THE Cannabis in Russia is illegal for both medical and recreational use.
Greiner, who she pleaded guilty to the charges, she said she made an honest mistake by accidentally packing the vape cartridges as she was rushing to catch her flight to Russia.
Source: News Beast