Ryanair boss says ‘well done’ after being pied in the face by protesters

Michael O’Leary found himself in an unfortunate creamy situation (Picture: EPA)

Ryanair’s boss has been splattered in the face with a pair of cream pies by eco protesters who surrounded him.

Michael O’Leary, 62, looked helpless when he was caught off guard as he was about to talk to reporters in Brussels, Belgium, this morning.

A black-clad woman can be seen running up to the CEO with a grin on her face before splattering him with a pie.

He tried to reel away and duck before a second woman ran up to him and delivered a second splatter – this time down his neck and back.

It was an apt welcome to the country for Mr O’Leary, as one of the protesters shouted: ‘Welcome to Belgium!’ before cheering and running off.

But Mr O’Leary seemed to find the funny side to it all and told the media: ‘I have never had such a warm welcome.

‘Unfortunately it was environmentalists and the cream was artificial. I invite passengers to come to Ireland where the cream is better!’

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Ryanair’s feed on X, formerly known as Twitter, which is well known for its banter, commented after the incident: ‘Passengers so happy with our routes and petition that they’re celebrating with cake,’ it said.

Mr O’Leary was in Brussels because Ryanair pilots based in Belgium’s Charleroi airport announced they would strike on September 14-15 – dates chosen specifically to coincide with a general meeting of Ryanair shareholders.

The pilots are demanding ‘an immediate end to the blackmail carried out by the company to correlate the negotiation of a new collective work agreement with the abandonment of all individual legal procedures in progress’. 

They demand ‘strict compliance with Belgian law, the payment of arrears and the opening of negotiations without prerequisites’.

The Ryanair boss stood covered in cream right next to a cut out version of Ursula von der Leyen (Picture: EPA)

Ryanair is also battling with the European Commission in a battle to protect overflights from being cancelled.

A petition was sent in May signed by more than 1.1 million passengers to protect overflights from being adversely impacted when air traffic controllers go on strike.

Ryanair claims it had been forced to ‘disproportionately cancel’ thousands of overflights from Germany, Spain, Italy, the UK and Ireland.

An eco protester gleefully shoves a cream pie into Mr O’Leary’s face (Picture: EPA)

It blamed European aviation authorities for prioritising short-haul and domestic flights during strike times while leaving international travellers in the lurch.

But the European Commission said several European states already had protections in place to prevent overflight cancellations.

However Ryanair wants the same protections to be enforced in all EU member states.

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