The freedom of a 28-year-old former marine who was on a hunger strike in a Moscow prison has cost that of a 52-year-old international drug trafficker
While Russia was bombing Ukraine and the United States was leading the international coalition to isolate it, it was also secretly negotiating the exchange of “prisoners” and other issues of interest. That “discreet” negotiation, in the words of the State Department, gave fruit this Wednesday to a film exchange that resulted in the return to Texas of the former Marine Trevor Reed and that of the drug trafficker Konstantin Yaroshenko in the arms of his wife in Moscow .
Reed also had a love, Lina Tsybulnik, whom he was visiting in Moscow in 2016 when a drunken night landed him in jail. Russian authorities say that during the drive to the police station he tried to shake the officers’ arms so violently that the patrol car almost had an accident. For that incident, which his parents deny on the grounds that the US government can prove that the car did not stop or lose its direction, he was sentenced to nine years in prison.
He is not the only “hostage” in Russian hands. Another former Marine, Paul Whelan, who worked as head of security for the auto parts company BogWarner, is serving 16 years in prison on charges of espionage. And the basketball player Brittney Griner, who has won the Olympics twice, was arrested on February 17 at the Moscow airport after a marijuana oil vaporizer cartridge was found in her luggage for which she could face 10 years in prison. . She also has the aggravating circumstance of being an African-American lesbian who is an open defender of homosexual causes. “We will not rest until Paul Whelan and the others can return to the arms of their family and loved ones,” President Joe Biden promised in a statement.
“This Represents Zero Changes In How To Deal With Horrific Violence In Ukraine”
He omitted to say that the release of Reed, whom he chose due to serious health problems, was made impossible thanks to the release of an international drug trafficker arrested in Liberia when he conspired to introduce Latin American cocaine to Liberia, the US and other countries. Unfortunately for him, his contacts in Liberia were DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) moles.
The American president was referring to him when he said that to bring “Trevor” home he had had to make “difficult decisions” that are not taken lightly. State Department sources insisted that Yaroshenko, 52, had already served most of his sentence in a Connecticut jail.
“Let it be very clear,” warned this senior diplomatic position. “This represents zero change in how we deal with the appalling violence in Ukraine.”
#exchanges #detainees #Russia