Psaki: White House demands investigation into Ryanair flight diversion

The White House condemned President Alexander Lukashenko’s regime of Belarus for “persistent harassment and arbitrary detention of journalists for doing their jobs,” added Psaki.

The administration is also in contact with its bilateral partners and through multilateral channels, including NATO, the United Nations, the European Union and the OSCE.

“We don’t have anything to read at this point, but we will continue to work closely with them,” said Psaki.

Background: Belarus used fighter jets to force a Ryanair flight between Greece and Lithuania under the guise of a bomb threat over the weekend and arrested dissident journalist Raman Pratasevich.

State Secretary Antony Blinken quickly condemned the forced flight diversion and called for Pratasevich’s “immediate release”.

Several members of Congress The European heads of state and government also condemned them.

In response to the emergency landing The Lithuanian government issued a statement Recognition of Belarus as “unsafe for Lithuanian citizens” and a ban on flights to and from Lithuania crossing the country.

“Yesterday’s incident involving a civil aircraft on an international route was an unprecedented event in the history of European Union airspace, involving dozens of EU citizens, children and families,” the statement said.

Effects on flight routes: On Monday, Transport Minister Pete Buttigieg told CNN that the safety of flights over Belarusian airspace should be reviewed.

“We, in relation to the international bodies that we belong to, and as an administration at the FAA, are looking into this because the main reason my division exists is for safety,” he said.

Tanya Snyder contributed to this report.

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