Brittney Griner Pens Letter To President Biden Asking For His Help
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WNBA Star Brittney Griner Pens Letter To President Biden From Russian Prison Asking For His Help

TOPSHOT - US WNBA basketball superstar Brittney Griner arrives to a hearing at the Khimki Court, outside Moscow on June 27, 2022. - Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medallist and WNBA champion, was detained at Moscow airport in February on charges of carrying in her luggage vape cartridges with cannabis oil, which could carry a 10-year prison sentence. (Photo by Kirill KUDRYAVTSEV / AFP) (Photo by KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP via Getty Images)

WNBA star Brittney Griner penned a handwritten letter to President Joe Biden pleading for his assistance in getting her released from a Russian prison.

CBS News reports the WNBA All-Star pleaded with the president not to forget her, adding her appreciation for Independence Day has taken on a new meaning based on her experience in Russia.

“I’m terrified I might be here forever,” Griner wrote. “On the 4th of July, our family normally honors the service of those who fought for our freedom, including my father, who is a Vietnam War veteran. It hurts thinking about how I usually celebrate this day because freedom means something completely different to me this year.”

Griner has been detained in Russia since February after authorities claimed she had cartridges of cannabis oil in her luggage. Her trial began last week with an airport customs official and an unidentified individual testifying.

The U.S. has listed Griner as wrongfully detained in Russia, and many of her supporters have pushed for a prisoner swap to get Griner released, but the Russia-Ukraine war, in which the U.S. has sent weapons and billions of dollars to Ukraine, has likely impacted Griner’s detainment.

“We believe the Russian Federation is wrongfully detaining Brittney Griner. President Biden has been clear about the need to see all U.S. nationals who are held hostage or wrongfully detained abroad released, including Brittney Griner. The U.S. government continues to work aggressively—using every available means —to bring her home,” National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson said in a statement on Monday. “The President’s team is in regular contact with Brittney’s family and we will continue to work to support her family.”

Griner has been able to send and receive letters from friends and family members while being detained, but her team, the Phoenix Mercury (9-14), is struggling without her, and she has missed several significant moments, including her wife Cherelle Griner‘s graduation from North Carolina Central University Law School.