Brittney Griner, a WNBA star, was sentenced to nine years in a Russian prison after she was charged with drug smuggling.
The charges came after Russian police arrested her in an airport for having hash oil in a vape pen in her backpack. Griner's legal team filed an appeal earlier this week that would give her more time are her current location.
On Thursday afternoon, Russia announced an update on Griner's situation. According to a statement from the Russian foreign ministry, "quiet diplomacy" is underway regarding a potential prisoner swap.
Here's more from Reuters:
"Quiet diplomacy is under way and it should bear fruit if Washington follows it, and not fall into propaganda through media hype to score points before an election," said Ivan Nechayev, a spokesman for the Russian foreign ministry, referring to the U.S. midterm elections in November
Earlier this week, Bill Richardson, a former U.S. ambassador to the U.N., said he is "optimistic" that conversations between the United States and Russia are moving in the right direction.
The hope of a prisoner exchange has increased over the past few weeks. Hopefully Griner will be brought back to the United States in the near future.