US government: Griner of Russia wrongly held
According to the US government, the two-time basketball Olympic champion Brittney Griner in Moscow is wrongly held by Russia.
A spokeswoman for the Foreign Ministry in Washington confirmed corresponding US media reports on Tuesday. The spokeswoman, the special representative of US President Joe Biden for Geisel affairs, Roger Carstens, would also take care of the case of the American citizen. “The US government will continue to endeavor to provide Ms. Griner appropriate support.”
On March 23, a US diplomat was granted consular access to Griner. The US State Department had previously pushed for consular support. After her arrest, Griner sits in custody because of the accusation of drug possession at Moscow Airport Scheremetjewo. A court in the Moscow area in the city of Chimki had extended the arrest until May 19.
The basketball profile WNBA also focused on the case on Tuesday. In the season, which starts next weekend, a logo with the initials BG and Griner’s rear number 42 should be shown on all playing fields. The Phoenix Mercury, with which she was defeated by Chicago Sky in the final for the championship last season, can also continue to pay fully without this money being included in the salary limit of the squad. So far, the WNBA had held back heavily with public actions. According to reports, this was done out of concern to make the situation worse for Griner.
As the Interfax news agency reported at the beginning of March, citing Russian customs, so-called VAPE cartridges and hashish oil are said to have been discovered in February. According to the information, she threatens five to ten years in prison. The 31-year-old US national player has also played the UMMC Jekaterinburg team in the Urals since 2015. With the Russian top club, Griner won the Euroleague four times.