Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin was on board the passenger plane together with 165 people. According to Russian news agencies, Rogozin and other Russian officials were travelling on a commercial flight to the Moldovan capital of Chisinau.
The plane was denied passage over Romania or Hungary and had to land in Belarussian capital of Minsk. Rogozin himself stated that there was barely enough fuel to land safely.
Rogozin was to meet with Moldovan President Igor Dodon in Chisinau. Russian ambassador to Moldova confirmed to Russian state channel Rossiya 24 that Romania has denied access to the Russian plane on Friday.
While there is no official confirmation yet, the plane had probably been denied access to Romanian airspace due to the “presence of a sanctioned person”.
We don't have a confirmation but probably denied entry because Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin is on board. https://t.co/9kEeUhbAjW
— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) July 28, 2017
Rogozin is one of the highest ranking Russian officials who has been placed under EU sanctions over his involvement in 2014 Russian annexation of Crimea.
“The Romanian authorities endangered the lives of passengers of a regular S7 flight, including the ones of women and children,” Rogozin wrote on Twitter and promised retaliatory measures. “You wait for an answer, bastards!”, he added.
Commenting on the incident, Moldovan President Igor Dodid, who was scheduled to meet Rogozin on Friday, was quoted saying: “We are watching an unprecedented Russia-phobic show, which is designed to destroy Moldovan-Russian relations.”