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Top Democrat Senator Slams Biden For Releasing Terrorist For WNBA Player Brittney Griner

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On Thursday, Democrat Senator Bob Menendez (NJ) slammed Democrat President Joe Biden over the news that WNBA player Brittney Griner had been released from Russian captivity in a prisoner exchange for a notorious Russian arms dealer.

Griner, who already had a criminal record in the United States for a domestic violence incident in 2015, was arrested in Russia in February for drug smuggling charges. She was sentenced in August to nine years in prison.

“This should be a moment of deep reflection for the United States government to recognize we have a serious problem with hostage-taking of Americans,” Menendez said in a statement. “The Russians and other regimes that take American citizens hostage cannot pretend that there is equivalence between the Brittney Griners of the world and people like Viktor Bout, the so-called ‘Merchant of Death.’ Nothing could be further from the truth, and we cannot ignore that releasing Bout back into the world is a deeply disturbing decision.”

“We must stop inviting dictatorial and rogue regimes to use Americans overseas as bargaining chips, and we must try to do better at encouraging American citizens against traveling to places like Russia where they are primary targets for this type of unlawful detention,” he continued.

Menendez then pointed to U.S. Marine veteran Paul Whelan, who was arrested in December 2018 – more than three years before Griner – on baseless espionage charges.

“My heart also goes out to the families of other American citizens in Russian prisons and labor camps, including Paul Whelan,” the statement concluded. “They have my renewed commitment and determination to use the power of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to secure Mr. Whelan’s safe return and to continue fighting for the release of all Russian political prisoners, like Vladimir Kara Murza, and all other unjustly detained Americans.”

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