legal professional for convicted Russian hands broker Viktor Bout is 'assured' prisoner swap with US will happen - CNN

"I do have some advice about the development of how things are going ... but that tips comes from the Russian aspect as adversarial to the American side," Bout's attorney Steve Zissou told CNN's John Avalon on "New Day." "i'm assured this is going to get carried out."

Zissou persisted, "seem to be, it be no secret they've been looking him again for a number of years now. they've been making an attempt to get him back for a long time. that is now not some thing they've ever saved secret."

the U.S. has offered Bout, who is serving a 25-12 months US prison sentence, as a part of a possible deal to at ease the free up of Griner and Whelan. however Russian officers have requested that Vadim Krasikov, a former colonel from the country's home undercover agent agency, be protected within the US' proposed swap of Bout for Griner and Whelan, distinct sources standard with the discussions have advised CNN.

Krasikov changed into convicted in December of murdering a former Chechen f ighter, Zelimkhan "Tornike" Khangoshvili, in Berlin's Kleiner Tiergarten in 2019 and sentenced to life in prison.

The request was seen as complex for a few reasons, the sources told CNN, amongst them that Krasikov continues to be in German custody. As such, and because the request changed into no longer communicated formally but reasonably through a FSB backchannel, the united states executive did not view it as a valid counter to the USA' present which became first printed by way of CNN on Wednesday.

countrywide protection Council coordinator for strategic communications John Kirby in an prior interview on "New Day" known as the Russian's request a "unhealthy religion effort" and pointed out the country should accept the USA' present.

"This so-known as, you call it a counteroffer, we would name it a foul religion try and prevent what's a serious concept already on the desk. And oh, by the way Brianna, has been on the desk now for a number of weeks," Kirby advised CNN's Brianna Keilar on Monday. "preserving two american citizens who had been wrongfully detained hostage for a convicted assassin in a third country is barely -- we do not believe that a serious counteroffer in any respect. it's nothing greater than a nasty faith attempt with the aid of the Russians publicly to avoid what is a serious thought, one that we do not make certain in public and has been on the books for a number of weeks and we urge the Russians to settle for it."

On Friday US Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke with Russian international Minster Sergey Lavrov for the primary time considering the fact that Russia invaded Ukraine previous this 12 months.

Blinken observed he "pressed the Kremlin to accept the colossal thought that we put forth on the liberate of Paul Whelan and Brittney Griner." At a press convention on Friday he declined to say no matter if he notion Russia became more or less more likely to circulation on the idea following the conversation, nor would he describe how Lavrov replied.

The Russian foreign Ministry mentioned in a press release following the call that Lavrov "strongly counseled" to Blinken that the us should return to a mode of "quiet diplomacy" regarding a likely prisoner exchange "with none dubious media leaks."

prior to the name between Blinken and Lavrov, US officials had expressed frustration at Moscow's lack of significant response to the idea to free Whelan and Griner. State branch spokesperson Ned rate on Thursday stated "this has no longer moved to the extent we want."

CNN's Natasha Bertrand, Frederik Pleitgen and Jennifer Hansler contributed to this document.

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