Street with Belarus’ embassy in Bucharest might be renamed after dissident journalist Roman Protasevich arrested following hijacked Ryanair flight


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The street accommodating Belarus’ Embassy in Bucharest might be renamed after Belarusian dissident Roman Protasevich, who have been arrested on Sunday by the Lukashenko regime after a Rynair flight with Protasevich and his girlfriend on board had been hijacked on Athens-Vilnius route.

The District 1 mayor, Clotilde Armand, said she endorses such a initiative to rename the street. Armand announced she will submit a request to the Capital City Hall, asking that Tuberozelor street in District 1 should be named Roman Protasevich street.

“I endorse professor Andrei Oișteanu’s proposal to rename a street in the District 1 of the Capital where there is Belarus’ Embassy. In this respect, I will file the following proposal to the Bucharest City Hall: Tuberozelor street in District 1 to be named Roman Protasevich street, after the dissident journalist. We live in a European state and this act of terrorism committed by president Aleksandr Lukashenko to hijack a commercial flight between two states members of EU and NATO cannot remain unpunished,” district 1 mayor Clotilde Armand posted on Facebook.

Andrei Oișteanu, professor at the University of Bucharest, has made a proposal that got viral on Facebook in the past 24 hours.

“I support the idea that the District 1 city hall or the Bucharest general city hall to change the name of the street accommodating Belarus’ Embassy. Instead of Tuberozelor street it should be named Roman Protasevich street. The entire correspondence of the embassy would come and go from the street with the name of the dissident journalist. At the same time, diplomats would have Roman Protasevich’s name printed on their business cards”.

Roman Protasevich is one of dozens of Belarusian journalists and activists campaigning in exile against Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko’s rule. He is the founder of the Telegram channel Nexta, which helped mobilize anti-Lukashenko protests, and was charged last year with “organizing mass riots and group actions that grossly violate public order.” Protasevich is on a government wanted list for terrorism.
The 26-year-old dissident was traveling on Ryanair flight 4978 from Athens, Greece to Vilnius, Lithuania on Sunday when shortly before touchdown the plane was diverted by Belarusian air traffic control to the capital Minsk over a supposed security alert.
Ryanair’s CEO Michael O’Leary accused Belarus of “state-sponsored piracy,” telling Ireland’s Newstalk radio Monday that he believed Belarusian KGB agents were also on the flight that was carrying 26-year-old Protasevich, who is wanted in Belarus on a variety of charges.
The arrested dissident journalist appeared in a video after his arrest by Belarusian authorities, amid amid mounting fears for his safety and widespread fury over the diversion of a European commercial flight.
“The attitude of the [Interior Ministry] employees towards me has been as correct as possible and in compliance with the law,” Protasevich says in the video, which was posted Monday evening to a pro-government social media channel.
“I continue to cooperate with the investigation and have confessed to organizing mass riots in the city of Minsk,” he also says. His supporters believe the video was made under pressure, CNN reported.

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