EU Maru’s reaction to Belarus diverting planes to nab reporters

Brussels (AP) — Angry European Union leaders to consider Monday’s joint response to Belarus’ detour of planes traveling between EU member states to arrest prominent Belarusian opposition journalists It has been set.

Ramanplata Sevic, who ran a popular messaging app that played an important role in helping organize large-scale protests against the prestigious Belarusian president, circumvented the Belarusian capital from Athens, Greece to Lithuania. I was on a Ryanair flight to Belarus. Minsk while flying over Belarus. A Belarusian flight controller warned the plane crew about the alleged bomb threat and ordered them to land in Minsk. Belarusian fighters have been scrambled to escort Ryanair airliners.

Immediately after landing, 26-year-old Platasevic and his Russian girlfriend were taken out of the plane. The jet was finally allowed to continue flying and landed in Vilnius hours later than planned.

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda called the incident “state-sponsored terrorist acts” on Sunday, banning Belarusian planes from European Union airports and proposing “serious sanctions” to the Belarusian government.

Twenty-seven EU leaders held a two-day summit late Monday, and the issue quickly jumped to the top of the agenda in the united accusations of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko.

EU Foreign Policy Officer Josep Borrell called it “another blatant attempt by Belarusian authorities to silence the voices of all opposition parties.” He called the plane detour an “unacceptable step” and emphasized that the relationship between the two was getting worse.

Belarus’ Foreign Ministry accused it of saying a “warlike” EU statement on Monday, claiming that state officials acted “fully in full compliance with international rules.”

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called the case “shocking” and accused the Belarusian government of endangering the lives of people on board aircraft, including some Americans. He called on Platasevic’s release and the International Civil Aviation Organization Council to consider the case.

The flight tracker site showed that the plane was about 10 km (6 miles) away from the Lithuanian border when the plane was detoured.

“I saw this Belarusian guy whose girlfriend was sitting right behind us. He was surprised when the pilot said the plane was aimed at Minsk. The plane finally arrived in Vilnius. After that, passenger Marius Lutokauskas said, “I sat for an hour after landing. Then they began to release the passengers and took them with them. I never met them again.”

Pratasevich, co-founder of the Nexta channel of the Telegram messaging app, played a key role in helping organize a large-scale protest against Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. Belarusian authorities have designated it as a militant and leveled allegation that instigated a riot against Platasevic, who could face 15 years in prison if convicted.

The months-long protests in Belarus were fueled by Lukashenko’s election in August for his sixth presidential term, accusing the opposition of being fraudulent. Since August, more than 34,000 people have been arrested in Belarus and thousands have been brutally beaten.


Dapkus was reported by Vilnius, Lithuania. Vladimir Isachenkov of Moscow contributed to this report.

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