Dozens of organizations sign letter calling on President Biden to strike deal for Brittney Griner's release

1 week ago 17

(CNN)Dozens of civilian and quality rights organizations person joined Cherelle Griner, the woman of detained WNBA prima Brittney Griner, successful urging President Joe Biden to onslaught a woody for the athlete's release, according to a missive obtained by CNN Wednesday.

Over 40 organizations -- including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Human Rights Campaign, GLAAD, National Urban League and the Women's National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA) -- signed the letter.

"President Biden and Vice President Harris, we impulse you to marque a woody to bring our teammate, wife, sister, hero, and person Brittney Griner location swiftly and safely," the missive continued.

    The missive was archetypal reported by the New York Times.

      Families of unlawfully detained Americans near  with mixed emotions aft  Blinken tried to reassure them successful  call

      In response, National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson said successful a statement: "President Biden has been wide astir the request to spot each US nationals who are held hostage oregon wrongfully detained overseas released, including Brittney Griner.

      "The US authorities continues to enactment aggressively -- utilizing each disposable means -- to bring her home."

      A elder medication authoritative told CNN the White House continues to enactment with the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs to unafraid her release.

        "The President's squad is successful regular interaction with Brittney's household and we volition proceed to enactment to enactment her family," the authoritative said.

        "Secretary Blinken has spoken with Brittney's woman precocious (including yesterday) and the White House is intimately coordinating with the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs, who has met with Brittney's family, her teammates, and her enactment network."

        In an interrogation with MSNBC, Cherelle said she has "asked" and "requested" to talk to the President but had not heard backmost amid increasing calls for the brace to meet.

        "At this point, it astir feels like, you know, they're indirectly telling maine 'no,'" she said Wednesday.

        "It astir feels similar indirectly they've told america arsenic a household they volition not conscionable with america contempt the information that everybody is saying erstwhile I bash talk to people: 'BG's a apical priority. We cognize she's wrongfully detained. We're doing everything.'

        "But the radical that person the highest power, they person not spoken to maine and my family."

        CNN reported Wednesday that, according to a elder State Department official, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke to Cherelle Griner one-on-one connected Wednesday.

        The authoritative did not supply further details astir the call, which came aft a State Department mistake had near the mates incapable to talk connected their anniversary.

        "I person been capable to talk with Secretary Blinken wrong of the White House," Cherelle added.

        "I person been capable to talk with immoderate persons from the SPEHA department," referring to the Office of the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs.

        "However, the idiosyncratic that has the power, you know, the Biden medication itself, being President Biden, Vice President Harris, I person not spoken to them."

        Brittney Griner, 31, has been held successful Russia since February connected accusations of cause smuggling and has been officially classified arsenic "wrongfully detained," a US State Department authoritative told CNN successful May.

        She volition stay successful Russian custody done astatine slightest July 2, aft a Russian tribunal extended her detention, Russian authorities quality bureau Tass reported past week.

        Cherelle says she hasn't talked to her woman since February 17.

        Griner's agent, Lindsay Kagawa Colas, backed calls for the President to conscionable with the family.

        "If #BrittneyGriner is simply a priority, @POTUS volition conscionable with Brittney's household and this Administration volition bash what is indispensable to get her location swiftly and safely," Kagawa Colas tweeted Tuesday.

        "Each time is precious and not different should spell by without the enactment required to bring BG home."

        Griner poses for photographs with her golden  medal during Tokyo 2020.

        It comes arsenic Brittney was named an honorary WNBA All-Star crippled starter this week.

        "During each play of Brittney's vocation successful which determination has been an All-Star Game, she has been selected arsenic an All-Star," league commissioner Kathy Englebert announced successful a connection Wednesday.

          "It is not hard to ideate that if BG were present with america this season, she would erstwhile again beryllium selected and would, nary doubt, amusement disconnected her unthinkable talents. So, it is lone fitting that she beryllium named arsenic an honorary starter contiguous and we proceed to enactment connected her harmless instrumentality to the US."

          The 2022 WNBA All-Star crippled is scheduled to instrumentality spot connected July 10 successful Chicago.

          CNN's Jon Passantino, Nicquel Terry Ellis and Allie Malloy contributed to this report.

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