Russia refused entry to 2 airlines from France and Austria because they planned to avoid Belarusian airspace

·1 min read
Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin. Aleksey Nikolskyi/AP
  • Russia denied entry to Air France and Austrian Airlines, forcing them to cancel flights.

  • The two airlines were planning to avoid Belarusian airspace in their flights to Moscow.

  • The EU asked airlines to avoid Belarus after it diverted a Ryanair plane and arrested a dissident.

  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Russia blocked two European airlines from entering the country after they tried to fly there while avoiding Belarusian airspace.

The BBC and CNN reported that Russia refused entry to Air France and Austrian Airlines after they requested flight paths that avoided Belarus, forcing the airlines to cancel services Wednesday and Thursday.

The European Union asked airlines to avoid Belarusian airspace after the country diverted a Lithuania-bound Ryanair plane to the Belarusian capital, Minsk, and arrested the dissident Roman Protasevich, who was on board.

Russia is the only country standing by Belarus after the flight was intercepted.

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