US basketball star Griner freed in Russian prisoner swap

NNA - Basketball star Brittney Griner is "safe" and headed home to the United States after being freed from a Russian prison ordeal in a swap for the notorious arms dealer Viktor Bout, the two countries announced on Thursday.

President Joe Biden delivered an early-morning address to the nation to announce the breakthrough, and said he had spoken to Griner just "moments ago."

"She is safe. She is on a plane. She is on her way home," Biden said, adding that she should be back in the United States within 24 hours.

The Olympic legend and LGBT trailblazer, who was being held in a remote penal colony, was arrested at a Moscow airport in February and handed nine years in prison in August for possessing vape cartridges with a small quantity of cannabis oil.

'Family is whole'

Moscow confirmed it had exchanged Griner for Bout, who was serving a 25-year sentence in the United States.

"On December 8, 2022, at the Abu Dhabi airport, the exchange of Russian citizen Viktor Bout for US citizen Brittney Griner... was successfully completed," the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement. -- AFP


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تابعوا أخبار الوكالة الوطنية للاعلام عبر أثير إذاعة لبنان على الموجات 98.5 و98.1 و96.2 FM

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