Blinken likely seek out Lavrov after Griner sentencing, White House says

Singapore Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan speaks with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken during a U.S. ministerial meeting at the Sokha Hotel in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, August 4, 2022. Andrew Harnik/Pool via REUTERS

Aug 4 (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken will likely try to speak with his Russian counterpart on the sidelines of a meeting in Cambodia, White House national security spokesperson John Kirby said on Thursday after U.S. basketball star Brittney Griner was sentenced to nine years in prison on drugs charges in Russia. read more

"I have no doubt that if he has an opportunity to buttonhole Mr Lavrov, he will do so. And if he doesn't, if it doesn't just happen organically, I'm sure Secretary Blinken will reach out and have that communication," Kirby told MSNBC.

When the verdict and sentence were delivered, Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov were both attending an Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) gala dinner in Cambodia.

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Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Editing by Howard Goller

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