Minsk Province

Western powers call for probe into Belarus plane diversion

The United States and western European members of the U.N. Security Council called on May 26 for the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to investigate Belarus' diversion of a European flight and arrest of a dissident on board.

Their call came hours after a defiant President Alexander Lukashenko on May 26 defended the action, lashing out at critics at home and abroad.

Belarus Lukashenko Lashes out at Western “Ill-Wishers”

The Belarusian leader said "ill-wishers" are "trying to strangle Belarus" in his first speech since a commercial flight was intercepted and a critical blogger arrested.

Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko hit out at Western powers on Wednesday, saying that his country's "ill-wishers" are "trying to strangle Belarus."

EU Leaders Hesitant about Russian Involvement in Ryanair Plane Hijacking

Despite the speculations about a Russian involvement in the forced landing of the Ryanair airliner in Minsk, given the importance of Russia, EU leaders who met in Brussels for a two-day summit decided to decouple the issues and concentrate on sanctioning Belarus.

Hijacking Western Complacency

In addition to reporting on Belarusian security forces' violent crackdown against peaceful demonstrators, Nexta had provided daily instructions on when, where, and how Belarusians should mobilize during last fall's countrywide mass protests against Lukashenko's bogus election victory. Its Sunday calls for a National March for Freedom brought as many as 200,000 people into the streets of Minsk.

Detained Journalist Protasevich from Ryanair Plane Forced to Land in Minsk Likely Tortured

Belarusian dissident journalist Roman Protasevich was arrested on Sunday after Belarusian authorities diverted Ryanair flight from Athens to Vilnius of a possible bomb threat and forced it to land at an airport near Minsk.

Fears are growing that the Belarusian journalist who is well-known critic of President Lukashenko, has been subject to torture while in custody.

Former UK Ambassador to Belarus: Lukashenko Doesn’t Care about International Community Response

There is growing international outrage against Belarus for what's being described as the 'hijacking' of a passenger plane carrying an opposition activist. The RyanAir flight from Athens was diverted and forced to land in Minsk, where Roman Protasevich was detained.