Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, recently released from American custody in a prisoner exchange for WNBA star Brittney Griner, visited the Russian-occupied city of Luhansk in Ukraine over the weekend, according to Russian state media, CNN reported.
Bout said he was confident that the area “would soon be peaceful, and people would live without fear for their future,” according to Russian state news agency RIA Novosti.
Bout, who was visiting Luhansk for the first time, was there to attend the launch of the Luhansk branch of the pro-Kremlin Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR).
Last week Bout joined the far-right LDPR in a move that The Guardian reported could result in him running for a seat in the Russian Parliament.
LDPR leader Leonid Slutsky said he and Bout had to alter their route to Luhansk twice due to the fact that “high-precision weapons were working nearby,” according to CNN.