Russia said on Thursday that negotiations with the United States over a prisoner swap were still ongoing, but there was no agreement to swap basketball player Brittney Griner for the drug dealer. arms imprisoned Viktor Bout.
“So far there is no agreement in this area,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said talks on prisoner exchanges had been going on for some time, but so far remained without results.
Russian officials were responding to comments by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken that Washington had made a „serious offer” to Moscow to secure the release of Brittney Griner and former US Marine Paul Whelan, also detained in Russia.
„The issue of mutual exchange of Russian and American citizens detained on the territory of the two countries was discussed at one time by the presidents of Russia and the United States,” said Maria Zakharova, apparently referring to conversations prior to Russia’s February 24 invasion of Ukraine.
„They gave instructions to the authorized structures concerned to carry out the negotiations. These are being carried out by the competent services. A concrete result has not yet been obtained.”