Earlier today, Brittney Griner was officially released from a Russian prison. Griner had been stationed in a labor camp where she was going to serve nine years for drug possession. However, the United States government was able to negotiate a prisoner swap.

The man going back to Russia is notorious arms dealer Viktor Bout, who is known as the merchant of death. He is a dangerous man, although he was the United States’ one shot at bringing home Griner. Additionally, the U.S. tried to free Paul Whelan, although Russia was unwilling.

Brittney Griner #42 of the Phoenix Mercury warms up before Game Five of the 2021 WNBA Playoffs semifinals against the Las Vegas Aces at Michelob ULTRA Arena on October 8, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Brittney Griner Meets Viktor Bout

Of course, there has been quite a lot of backlash online about the United States’ negotiation tactics. Many feel like the U.S. looks weak by allowing Bout to go back to Russia. One such person is former Trump administration higher-up John Bolton.

Bolton made a statement on Twitter, however, the bigger story was the footage that @chronology22 left as a reply. This footage was taken by Russian state media, and it depicts Griner signing her release forms. As you can see, her hair has been cut short, and she was all smiles while signing the release. Furthermore, we even saw footage of her on the tarmac in the UAE where she came face-to-face with Bout while heading to her final plane home.

This marks the end of an incredibly dark time in Griner’s life. For months, her family, the government, and the WNBA have been trying to bring her home. Now, she will finally get to be with her wife Cherelle again.

This remains a developing story, so stay tuned to HNHH for all of the latest news and updates. Additionally, let us know what you think of this footage, in the comments below.

[Via]