US vs Belarus on hijacked Ryanair flight
Flight operator admits: "No bomb scare, maneuver to arrest dissident"
The US Department of Justice intervenes in view of the official evaluation that the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) will make next January 31 on the report on the Ryanair flight (FR4978). Last May 23 the plane had been diverted into the airspace of Belarus due to a bomb threat. Now Washington presents testimony that directly accuses the government of Aleksander Lukashenko of having created a false alarm, in order to force the aircraft to land and thus be able to arrest the dissident Roman Protasevich.
The Ryanair flight FR4978 operated by a B-737 had taken off from Athens bound for Vilnius, in Lithuania, with 126 passengers on board, including the dissident and his fiancée who were returning to the country that had given him asylum. The New York court has indicted four Belarusian officials for conspiracy.
With regard to the hijacking, in fact, the judges have acquired the testimony of an air traffic controller who was monitoring the aircraft that day. The man confirmed to the Federal Bureau of Investigation that it was a false alarm, providing audio and video recordings of the events that took place inside the Minsk area control center. According to Washington, computer sources confirm what has been reconstructed by Icao investigators.
On the same subject see also the article published by AVIONEWS.
AVIONEWS - World Aeronautical Press Agency