Raman Pratasevich, a Belarusian journalist and activist in a video released by Belarusian authorities on 24th May after his abduction on a Ryanair flight. Credit: Alamy
On 23rd May, Ryanair Flight 4978, en route from Athens to Vilnius in Lithuania, was contacted by Belarusian ground authorities. They told the pilots of the plane, which was still in Belarusian airspace, that according to their “special services” there was a bomb on board. Threats had, they claimed, been sent to several airports including the Belarus capital Minsk, where they advised the pilots to land.
The pilots were apparently unconvinced: the plane, at the time, was considerably closer to Vilnius than Minsk so why land in Minsk? But there was another factor for them to consider: the…
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