Home Breaking News Flights from Belarus banned by UK Foreign Office after Ryanair flight was hijacked in ‘state piracy’

Flights from Belarus banned by UK Foreign Office after Ryanair flight was hijacked in ‘state piracy’

24th May 21 4:18 pm

The British Foreign Secretary, Dominic Raab has told all UK airlines not to fly in Belarus airspace and he has also banned any incoming flights from the country.

This comes as a Ryanair flight was “hijacked” by the Belarusian President which led to a “false bomb threat” in order to arrest a key journalist who is an oponent to Alexander Lukashenko.

Speaking in the House of Commons on Monday afternoon Raab told MPs, “Lukashenko’s regime must be held to account for such reckless and dangerous behaviour.

“The scenario as reported is a shocking assault on civil aviation and an assault on international law. It represents a danger to civilian flights everywhere.”

The Belarusian ambassador in the UK was summoned by the Foreign Office to explain their actions in breaking international law.

Raab said, “We have summoned the Belarusian ambassador, the Minister for the European neighbourhood is conveying our condemnation of these acts as we speak.

“We’re calling for the council of ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) to urgently convene to address thoroughly and rigorously this incident.”

The British Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps tweeted, “Following the forced diversion of a @Ryanair aircraft to Minsk yesterday, I’ve instructed @UK_CAA (Civil Aviation Authority) to request airlines avoid Belarusian airspace in order to keep passengers safe.

“I have also suspended Belavia’s operating permit.”

The Foreign Secretary added, “The Belarusian authorities claim this was in relation to an alleged bomb threat. We see no evidence to support that claim.

“We understand that Mr Protasevich was detained on spurious charges.

“The UK calls for his immediate release and the release of all other political prisoners in Belarus. We are urgently seeking full details of precisely what took place in relation to Flight FR4978, but the scenario, as reported, is a shocking assault on civil aviation and assault on international law.

“It represents a danger to civilian flights everywhere, and it is an egregious, extraordinary departure from the international law and the international practise that guides international civil aviation under the Chicago convention.

“The regime in Minsk must provide a full explanation for what appears to be… a serious violation of international law.

“Mr Lukashenko’s regime must be held to account for such reckless and dangerous behaviour… For our part, we’ve summoned the Belarusian ambassador, the minister for the European Neighbourhood is conveying our condemnation of these acts as we speak, and we are working with our international partners.

“I know the whole house will join me in condemning unequivocally this reprehensible action under the Lukashenko regime. The UK will stand firm in protecting freedom of the media, upholding international law, maintaining the safety of international civil aviation.”

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