(Adds details, background)
MOSCOW Aug 29 Poland refused permission for a
plane carrying Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu to fly
through its airspace on Friday while attempting to return from a
visit to Slovakia, Russia's RIA news agency said.
RIA said the minister's plane turned around and landed back
in the Slovak capital Bratislava.
A spokesman for the Polish state air navigation agency said:
"It is too early to comment, we are checking all the
circumstances that led to this occurrence."
The reason for the reported incident was unclear. Poland has
been one of the countries most critical of Russia's actions in
the Ukraine crisis, accusing it of aggression against its
A Polish foreign ministry spokesman said he had no knowledge
of the incident, and a Russian defence ministry spokesman
declined to comment.
RIA said its correspondent aboard the Tu-154 plane had been
told by a crew member that the pilots had received a message
that Poland was not allowing the flight to use its airspace,
after which the plane made a sharp turn and flew back.
(Reporting by Mark Trevelyan in Moscow and Marcin Goettig in
Warsaw; editing by Ralph Boulton)