Saudi prince made personal mediation efforts for Griner's release, says foreign minister

RIYADH, Dec 9 (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman extended “personal mediation efforts” to facilitate the discharge of American basketball celebrity Brittney Griner in a Russia-US prisoner swap, the kingdom’s foreign minister said on Thursday.

Washington has denied Any mediation, asserting the talks were between the United States and Russia, after a joint Saudi-UAE negate that said the president of the United Arab Emirates and Prince Mohammed led mediation efforts.

“I’m attentive to his highness’s personal efforts relating to the basketball participant and his engagement and personal intervention to facilitate this release,” Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud told journalists in Riyadh.

“As for what others declare, I’m in a position to not comment on that.”

The swap enchanting Griner and Russian citizen Viktor Bout took set of dwelling at an airport within the UAE capital Abu Dhabi.

Saudi Arabia had scored a diplomatic victory in September by securing freedom For foreign fighters captured in Ukraine, at a time of stress between Riyadh and Washington whose ties were strained over human rights, oil affords and Russia.

Riyadh has resisted Western power to help isolate Russia, a fellow OPEC+ oil producer.

Prince Faisal, at a news conference all over a discuss over with By China’s president to the kingdom, he said Saudi Arabia does not think in picking sides, and sought to cooperate with all financial powers including competitors the United States and China.

Reporting by Maha El Dahan and Aziz El Yaakoubi; Writing by Ghaida Ghantous; Making improvements to by Angus MacSwan and Daniel Wallis

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Belief Tips.

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