A Ryanair flight from Ireland to Poland diverted to Berlin after the crew were warned of a “potential security threat” on the plane, the airline said Monday.
German air traffic control warned the crew of the Dublin-Krakow flight of the potential threat on Sunday, Ryanair said in a statement, without elaborating. It said the captain followed procedures and diverted to Berlin, the nearest airport.
Passengers were taken off the plane “to facilitate extensive security checks of passengers and all baggage,” the airline said. Once they were cleared, passengers were flown to Krakow on a spare plane after a seven-hour delay.
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German federal police said early Monday morning that their deployment was finished, but declined to give details of what led to it, news agency dpa reported. A search of the plane found nothing untoward.
Last week, a Ryanair flight from Greece to Lithuania was intercepted and forced to land in Minsk, Belarus, and a passenger, dissident journalist Roman Protasevich, was arrested.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen likened the incident to a "hijacking," while Belarus' actions were dubbed "an act of state terrorism" by Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, who said it must not go unpunished. The EU has since stopped its flights from flying in Belarus' airspace and issued sanctions against the country.
Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko defended his decision to tell the Ryanair flight to land in his country, maintaining his contention that there was a bomb threat against it. He called it an “absolute lie” that a fighter jet he scrambled forced the plane to land.