August 8, 2022

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US basketball star 'diplomatically held hostage' pleads guilty in Moscow court

US basketball star ‘diplomatically held hostage’ pleads guilty in Moscow court

Reuters

NOS news

American basketball star Brittney Griner admitted in a Moscow court that she was in possession of cannabis oil when she was arrested at the Russian capital’s airport in February. However, he denies taking deliberate steps. According to his lawyer, Griner packed his luggage in a hurry and was therefore negligent.

One of the most popular women’s basketball players in the world, Griner plays for the top team in the American WNBA, the Phoenix Mercury. In the months when the American tournament is stalled, he has been playing in the Russian tournament for years, where he makes more money than in the United States.

She gets ten years in prison. The U.S. says he was wrongfully detained. The country believes that Greiner is the victim of what’s known as hostage diplomacy: tricking foreigners into doing something by another government with trumped-up charges.

Countries like Iran and China are also regularly accused of such practices. Arrived there recently Two Iranian-British women freed After years in prison, the United Kingdom owed Iran another half a billion dollars in exchange. Two Canadian businessmen were arrested in China a few years ago after Canada arrested a Chinese top woman at telecommunications giant Huawei. Huawei’s top woman freed after Canada was missing

Merchant of Death

Another possibility that has been suggested is that Russia wants to arrange a prisoner exchange. Russian media have speculated a trade with an arms dealer nicknamed Viktor Bode Merchant of Death† Bolt seat 25 years imprisonment Because he wanted to supply weapons to FARC rebels who could use them to harass US security forces in Colombia.

Letter from Griner

Kreiner’s family has urged the US government to try to secure his release. Criner sent a letter to President Biden in which he said he feared he would never be freed. Biden later called Greiner’s wife and said he was doing everything he could to free her.

Russia has denied that Griner is being held for diplomatic reasons. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov says that “American efforts to make noise in public will not help solve the problems at hand.” He also says that Russia is ready to talk with the US about the fate of Kreiner after the court verdict.