Russia denied entry to its airspace for two flights that were trying to avoid Belarusian airspace in accordance with EU warnings.
The flights were being carried out by EU airlines Air France and Austrian Airlines Russia, an ally of Belarus, refused entry without a “new authorisation” for the flights.
Belarus is in the middle of an international incident after it committed an act of air piracy forcing a Ryanair flight from Greece to Lithuania to land in Minsk in order to arrest a dissident journalist.
The Belarusian authorities told the Ryanair flight there was a bomb on board and it was intercepted by fighter jets.
As the move was condemned across the western world, President Lukashenko of Belarus claimed that Switzerland had told them of the bomb threat.
Russia is publicly backing Belarus and has accused the EU of putting safety at risk by telling aircraft to avoid Belarusian air space.
Both the UK and the EU have placed sanctions on Belarus and United Nations is investigating the incident of air piracy.
The western world has also called for the immediate release of Roman Protasevich and his girlfriend Sofia Sapega, who is a Russian citizen.