Roman Protasevich: International leaders condemn Belarus after Ryanair flight is compelled to land and journalist is arrested

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Eu leaders and the USA have strongly condemned the arrest of a Belarusian dissident journalist after the Ryanair flight he was once travelling on was once compelled to land within the Belarus capital Minsk.

Roman Protasevich, 26, was once arrested after his flight from Athens was once diverted from its scheduled vacation spot of Vilnius in Lithuania on Sunday.

Belarus state media mentioned the airplane was once switched to Minsk following a bomb risk, and that Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko for my part ordered a MiG-29 fighter jet to escort the flight to Minsk.

Alternatively, opposition teams have mentioned it was once an operation through Belarus particular products and services to “hijack” the flight so they might arrest Mr Protasevich.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken accused President Lukashenko’s authorities of endangering the lives of the ones on board the airplane and demanded a “complete investigation”.

“We strongly condemn the Lukashenka regime’s brazen and stunning act to divert a industrial flight and arrest a journalist. We call for a global investigation and are coordinating with our companions on subsequent steps. The US stands with the folks of Belarus,” he tweeted.

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Passengers onboard ‘hijacked’ flight discuss in their revel in

NATO Secretary Normal Jens Stoltenberg mentioned the incident was once “severe and perilous” and “calls for global investigation”.

Extra on Alexander Lukashenko

EU leaders will meet later as of late to speak about imaginable motion following the incident.

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda mentioned he would suggest banning Belarusian planes from Eu Union airports and “severe sanctions” towards Mr Lukashenko’s authorities for what he described as a “state-sponsored terror act”.

Ursula von der Leyen, head of the EU’s government Eu Fee, demanded that Mr Protasevich be launched instantly and mentioned that the ones answerable for “the hijacking should be sanctioned”.

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Diverted Ryanair flight lands in Lithuania

Simon Coveney, overseas minister of Eire, the place Ryanair is based totally, warned that “EU state of no activity shall be taken as weak point through Belarus”.

UK Overseas Secretary Dominic Raab mentioned: “The United Kingdom is alarmed through experiences of the arrest of NEXTA journalist Roman Protasevich and cases that resulted in his flight being compelled to land in Minsk.

“We’re coordinating with our allies. This outlandish motion through Lukashenko may have severe implications.”

The United States, EU, Britain and Canada have already imposed shuttle bans and frozen the property of just about 90 Belarusian officers, together with Mr Lukashenko.

That transfer adopted Belarus’s election in August – Mr Lukashenko received however warring parties have mentioned there was once standard fraud concerned.

Roman Protasevich being detained by police in Belarus in 2017 during a protest
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Roman Protasevich being detained through police in Belarus in 2017 throughout a protest

Mr Protasevich, who now works for Telegram channel Belamova, is sought after in Belarus on fees together with establishing mass riots and inciting social hatred.

The costs relate to anti-government protests following the disputed election, fees which he denies.

The Ryanair flight from Athens have been diverted only a few mins sooner than it was once because of go into Lithuanian airspace, in line with flight monitoring site FlightRadar24.

Ryanair mentioned the aircraft’s team was once notified through Belarus of a possible safety risk on board and was once recommended to divert to the closest airport, Minsk.

After seven hours in Minsk, the aircraft took off and later landed in Vilnius safely.

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