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U.S. basketball star Griner released from Russian custody in prisoner swap -U.S. official

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2022-12-08T13:23:39Z

U.S. basketball player Brittney Griner, who was detained at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport and later charged with illegal possession of cannabis, is escorted before the verdict in Khimki outside Moscow, Russia, August 4, 2022. REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina/Pool/File Photo TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

U.S. basketball star Brittney Griner has been released in a prisoner swap with Russia and is now in U.S. custody, President Joe Biden said on Thursday.

“She is safe. She is on a plane. She is on her way home,” Biden said in a tweet.

Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris spoke by phone with Griner from the Oval Office, a U.S. official said, adding that the call included Griner’s wife, Cherelle.

Biden is to make remarks at 8:30 a.m. (1330 GMT), the White House said.

The Russian foreign ministry said it traded Griner for Russian citizen Viktor Bout, a former arms dealer.

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