Brittney Griner Remains In Russia; Trevor Reed Is Released

Griner, a two-time Olympic Gold medalist and member of the Phoenix Mercury WNBA team, was detained in February at an airport outside Moscow, where officials said they found a can of hash oil in his luggage. her reason. If convicted, she could face up to 10 years in prison.

US consular officials were not allowed to visit her for weeks, but that finally changed on March 23. “We are in regular contact with her legal team, with the network. broader than hers, and we have no higher priority than the safety and security of Americans, including those being detained in Russia,” state spokesman Ned Price told reporters. above April 12.

Griner was in Russia playing for UMMC team Ekaterinburg during the WNBA’s break – a situation her sports agent, Lindsay Kogawa Colas, said was necessary due to double standards and limited financial opportunities. for female athletes in the US.

“So while her detention has made headlines because of its geopolitical relevance, enhanced by celebrity, deep within it lies a story of gender pay gap in the United States,” wrote Kogawa Colas in an article for LA time published on Tuesday.

Griner’s wife, Cherelle, was privacy request as the family works to bring her home, with those close to her fearing that she will be used as a political pawn.

While Kogawa Colas says there is a small “community” of activists working every day to secure Griner’s release, she acknowledges the need to move delicately in describing the complete incarceration.

It’s a community that chooses its words carefully, used to moving together as a unit, says Kogawa Colas. “Right now, that community is doing its best to trust BG’s legal team and trust the White House’s commitment to doing everything in its power to bring Brittney home.”

In their statement Wednesday commemorating Reed’s release, his family also noted other Americans being held in Russia.

“We are proud of the Whelan family and all the other families of wrongfully detained Americans who are still waiting for their own release,” the Reed family said. “We will continue to advocate for the speedy release of hostages and detainees using all tools available to the US government.”

Biden said his administration remained committed to “returning Americans held hostage and wrongfully held abroad.”

“We won’t stop until Paul Whelan and the others join Trevor in the loving arms of family and friends,” he said.

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