Richardson visits Moscow as Griner, Whelan remain jailed

Sep 13, 2022, 5:10 PM | Updated: 6:55 pm
FILE - Former U.S. diplomat Bill Richardson speaks to reporters after a news conference in New York...

FILE - Former U.S. diplomat Bill Richardson speaks to reporters after a news conference in New York, Nov. 16, 2021. Richardson, who has worked to secure the releases of WNBA star Brittney Griner and another jailed American, Paul Whelan, visited Moscow this week and held meetings with Russian leaders. That's according to a person familiar with the matter who spoke to The Associated Press on Tuesday night, Sept. 13, 2022.(AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

(AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Bill Richardson, the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and a frequent emissary in hostage negotiations who has worked to secure the releases of WNBA star Brittney Griner and another jailed American, Paul Whelan, visited Moscow this week and held meetings with Russian leaders, a person familiar with the matter said Tuesday night.

The visit came as American officials have continued to press Russia to release Griner, who was sentenced last month to nine years in prison in a drug possession case, and Whelan, a Michigan corporate security executive serving a 16-year sentence on espionage-related charges. The U.S. government regards both as wrongfully detained.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced in July that the U.S. had made a “substantial proposal” to Russia to facilitate a swap. Though he did not detail the terms, a person familiar the matter said the U.S. had offered to release convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.

In in interview with The Associated Press last month, Richardson said he was hopeful about the chances of a two-for-two prisoner swap. In cases like this, Richardson said at the time, “it’s proportional — two-for two.”

The person who confirmed Richardson’s visit insisted on anonymity to discuss private negotiations. The Richardson Center for Global Engagement, which Richardson founded, issued a statement declining to comment on his visit. The nature of the dialogue and any outcome were not immediately clear.

CNN was first to report Richardson’s visit.

_____

Follow Eric Tucker on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/etuckerAP

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - This undated photo released by the Arizona Attorney General's Office shows Guillermina Fuent...
Associated Press

Arizona woman seeks leniency in ballot harvesting case

PHOENIX (AP) — A parade of character witnesses provided a judge Thursday with glowing reports about a southern Arizona woman who admitted collecting four voted early ballots in the 2020 primary election, as her lawyer seeks leniency and prosecutors urge him to send her to prison for a year. Testimony in Yuma County Superior Court […]
19 hours ago
FILE - A demonstrator waves a flag with marijuana leaves depicted on it during a protest calling fo...
Associated Press

Biden pardons thousands for ‘simple possession’ of marijuana

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is pardoning thousands of Americans convicted of “simple possession” of marijuana under federal law, as his administration takes a dramatic step toward decriminalizing the drug and addressing charging practices that disproportionately impact people of color. Biden’s move also covers thousands convicted of the crime in the District of Columbia. […]
19 hours ago
President Joe Biden aboard Marine One arrives at the Wall Street Landing Zone in New York, Thursday...
Associated Press

Biden: Nuclear ‘Armageddon’ risk highest since ’62 crisis

NEW YORK (AP) — President Joe Biden said Thursday that the risk of nuclear “Armageddon” is at the highest level since the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, as Russian officials speak of the possibility of using tactical nuclear weapons after suffering massive setbacks in the eight-month invasion of Ukraine. Speaking at a fundraiser for the Democratic […]
19 hours ago
This image provided by WOI-TV, shows reporter Nora J.S. Reichardt. The Des Moines television report...
Associated Press

Iowa reporter announces on newscast that she is transgender

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A Des Moines television reporter announced this week on a newscast that she will publicly identify as a transgender woman. Nora J.S. Reichardt of WOI-TV said that for a long time she didn’t think she would be able to reveal her identity on air. “I didn’t know if there was […]
19 hours ago
Associated Press

‘Queen of the House’ singer Jody Miller dies at age 80

BLANCHARD, Okla. (AP) — Jody Miller, whose “Queen of the House” won the 1966 Grammy Award for best country performance by a woman, died Thursday at age 80. Miller died in her hometown of Blanchard, Oklahoma, of complications from Parkinson’s disease, according to Universal Music Group, owner of Capitol Records, which released most of her […]
19 hours ago
Associated Press

Biden to designate his 1st national monument in Colorado

DENVER (AP) — The Biden administration is preparing to designate its first new national monument, preserving a World War 2-era alpine training site and providing a boost to the reelection campaign of the state’s senior Senator, Michael Bennet, according to a person familiar with the process. The designation is expected to come next week, when […]
19 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet can improve everyday life

Quantum Fiber supplies unlimited data with speeds up to 940 mbps, enough to share 4K videos with coworkers 20 times faster than a cable.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
...
Sanderson Ford

Don’t let rising fuel prices stop you from traveling Arizona this summer

There's no better time to get out on the open road and see what the beautiful state of Arizona has to offer. But if the cost of gas is putting a cloud over your summer vacation plans, let Sanderson Ford help with their wide-range selection of electric vehicles.
Richardson visits Moscow as Griner, Whelan remain jailed