#Update ‼️ A member of the US House Armed Services Committee said “it’s going to be very difficult” to get #BrittneyGriner out of #Russia 😰.
“Our diplomatic relationships with Russia are nonexistent at the moment,” Democratic Rep. John Garamendi of California told #CNN on Monday.
“Perhaps during the various negotiations that may take place, she might be able to be one of the solutions. I don’t know.”
He also noted that “Russia has some very, very strict #LGBT rules and laws” — though it’s not clear whether those rules and laws might impact Griner’s case.
But the Biden administration is working on trying to get Griner out of Russia, members of the Congressional Black Caucus said after meeting with President #JoeBiden on Monday.
The Russian customs agency said in a statement a US citizen was detained “in February of 2022,” after flying to Moscow from New York, but did not say what day. Her last IG post is from February 7th.
Griner, 31, is a championship-winning player with the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury and spends her offseasons playing for the Russian team UMMC Ekaterinburg.
Griner was arrested for having vapes that contained hash oil.
“As a US citizen was passing through the green channel at Sheremetyevo Airport upon arriving from New York, a working dog from the Sheremetyevo customs canine department detected the possible presence of narcotic substances in the accompanying luggage,” a statement from the customs service said.
The customs agency said Griner was placed in pre-trial detention and said a criminal case was underway for smuggling significant amounts of narcotic substances. Her whereabouts are currently unknown.
The offense carries a potential punishment of five to 10 years in prison. We are praying for a safe return 🙏🏾.