Earlier this week, the Biden administration announced it had offered the Russian government a prisoner swap in an attempt to bring Britney Griner and another American prisoner back to the United States.
On Friday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said he was ready to talk with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken to discuss a possible deal involving the WNBA superstar, ESPN reported.
According to numerous reports, the Biden administration’s proposed exchange deal involves sending convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout in exchange for Griner and another American prisoner, Paul Whelan.
Lavrov said his ministry received an official request for a call after Blinken made the announcement on Wednesday.
“I will listen to what he has to say,” Lavrov said.
Griner has been “unlawfully detained” in Russia for 162 days. The Olympic gold medalist was arrested at the Moscow airport back in February, when Russian officials allegedly found vape cartridges with cannabis oil in her luggage.
If convicted, Griner could face up to 10 years in prison.
This trade offer is the first concrete and public action taken by the Biden administration to bring Griner home. On Thursday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov called on the US government to take such public actions.
Follow the news about the development of the situation.