Belarus Releases Transcript After Ryanair Plane Landing Furore

MOSCOW (Reuters) -
A Ryanair aircraft, which was carrying Belarusian opposition blogger and activist Roman Protasevich and diverted to Belarus, where authorities detained him, lands at Vilnius Airport in Vilnius, Lithuania, Sunday. (Reuters/Andrius Sytas)

The Belarusian Transport Ministry on Tuesday released a transcript of a conversation on Sunday between one of its air traffic controllers and a Ryanair pilot forced to land in Belarus due to what turned out to be a hoax bomb alert.

Belarus used the incident, which triggered an international outcry and punitive measures against it, to arrest a dissident journalist who had been on board the Ryanair plane.

The transcript released on Tuesday differed from extracts previously publicized on Belarusian state media and also appeared to contradict statements from Minsk airport officials.

Reuters could not immediately verify the authenticity of the transcript released on Tuesday.