CAIRO, December 8. /TASS/. Mediation by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia has led to a prisoner swap between the United States and Russia, according to a joint statement of the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Saudi Foreign Ministry.
The text says that "the success of the mediation efforts was a reflection of the mutual and solid friendship between their two countries and the United States of America and the Russian Federation." It is noted that the exchange itself took place at the airport of Abu Dhabi.
According to the statement, UAE President Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud personally contributed to the swap.
The UAE and Saudi Foreign Ministries also expressed gratitude to the Russian and US governments for their cooperation and response to the proposed mediation.
Earlier on Thursday, the Russian Foreign Ministry reported that Russian citizen Viktor Bout, who was serving out a prison sentence in the United States on arms trafficking charges, was returning to Russia as a result of an agreement with the US to exchange him for American basketball player Brittney Griner, who was convicted in Russia of drug smuggling.