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Moscow says it’s ‘ready’ to discuss prisoner swap including basketball player Britney Greener

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A day after U.S. basketball player Brittney Greener was sentenced to nine years in prison, Russia’s foreign affairs chief Sergey Lavrov said he was open to a prisoner swap with the United States, but only if the president negotiated it. within the framework. grade.

Brittney Griner’s fate in the hands of Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin? Russia’s foreign affairs chief, Sergei Lavrov, said Friday, Aug. 5, that Moscow was prepared to discuss a prisoner swap involving basketball player Brittney Griner with Washington through a presidential-level communication channel.

“We are ready to discuss this topic, but only in the framework of the (communication) channels agreed to by Presidents (Vladimir) Putin and (Joe) Biden,” Sergey Lavrov told a news conference in Cambodia. Inside”.

“There is a special channel that the president agrees to, and despite some public statements, that channel retains all its relevance,” he continued.

“If the Americans still decide to engage in public diplomacy and make a loud statement (…), that’s their business, even their problem,” added Sergey Lavrov, assuring that Washington “can’t” in many Work “calmly and professionally” on the issue.

‘Substantial offer’ from Washington

A Russian court sentenced U.S. women’s basketball star Brittney Griner to nine years in prison on Thursday on drug trafficking charges, opening the way for a possible prisoner swap between Moscow and Washington.

Last week, U.S. foreign affairs chief Anthony Blinken and his foreign affairs chief, Sergey Lavrov, had their first discussions since Moscow’s offensive against Ukraine began.

Anthony Blinken assured the US would ‘continue’ discussions with Russia and said he had urged his counterpart to accept Washington’s ‘substantial offer’ to release Brittany Greener and another detained in Russia American Paul Whelan. Sentenced to 16 years in prison for espionage.

According to multiple US media reports, it will be a question of exchanging prominent Russian arms dealer Victor Booth, detained in the US, with Britney Greener and Paul Whelan.

with AFP

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