General AviationICAO to investigation Belarus plane diversion

ICAO to investigation Belarus plane diversion

The Aviator Africa ICAO

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) announced on Thursday it will investigate Belarus’s diversion  of a Ryanair plane and the arrest of a journalist on board, as airlines revealed Russia has blocked some European flights in a growing diplomatic row. The G7 global powers also demanded Minsk release the journalist, Roman Protasevich, and the EU’s foreign policy chief threatened hard-hitting economic sanctions.

It added that, at a meeting, the body “underlined the importance of establishing the facts of what happened, and of understanding whether there had been any breach by any ICAO Member State of international aviation law.”

Belarus’s strongman President Alexander Lukashenko, who enjoys strong support from Moscow, sparked international outrage by dispatching a fighter jet Sunday to intercept a Ryanair flight from Athens to Vilnius carrying Protasevich, 26, and his girlfriend Sofia Sapega, 23.

A nervous-looking Protasevich was last seen in a video released by Belarusian authorities on Monday in which he was seen supposedly admitting to helping to organize mass unrest, a charge that could land him in jail for 15 years.

I want you to relay our appeal everywhere, throughout the world, to government representatives, to EU countries, to EU leaders, to US leaders: I am appealing, I am begging, help me free my son,” his mother Natalia told journalists in Warsaw.

Roman’s father, Dmitry on Thursday said his son was “a tough man” and “a hero”.

Throughout his life he fought for the truth and passed it on to people, which is why Lukashenko committed this despicable act,” he said.

The couple and their lawyer confirmed that they have not had any communication with their son since his arrest. Foreign ministers of the Group of Seven wealthy nations on Thursday demanded the “immediate and unconditional release” of Protasevich, “as well as all other journalists and political prisoners held in Belarus”, in a joint statement published by the British government.

The European Union’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said Thursday that proposals were “on the table” to target key sectors of the Belarusian economy. The ICAO, of which Belarus is a member, has no power to order sanctions and Russia’s support for Minsk means the UN Security Council is unlikely to agree on a collective statement.

However EU countries are banning Belarusian carriers and the EU has also urged airlines to avoid Belarusian airspace. On Thursday, Austrian Airlines said it had cancelled a Vienna-Moscow flight after Russian authorities did not approve a route change for it to avoid Belarusian airspace.

Mshana Iddihttps://theaviator.co.ug/
Iddi Mshana Journalist - With a Bachelor Degree in Tourism, Iddi has a combined appetite of tourism and aviation. His diverse knowledge and experience of more than 6 years adds an exciting depth to his work. Currently, pursing Commercial Pilot Licence with IR & ME at EACAA Soroti Uganda.
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