More than 100 passengers were on board the plane, which was supposed to land in Beauvais, near Paris, Tuesday after taking off from Fez, Morocco, The Daily Mail reported. The flight, which departed three hours late, was diverted to Liege, Belgium, more than 200 miles from Beauvais, because of bad weather.
The passengers, most of whom were French, refused to leave the plane and insisted that they be flown back to France. Ryanair was offering a bus from Liege to Paris.
If the passengers thought they would win a victory over the discount airline, they got a shock. Far from being intimidated, the crew on the plane locked the toilets, turned off the lights and left the passengers with no food or water.
"The pilot left and he even left the cockpit door open," Yahiyaoui said, according to BBC News.
The passengers eventually disembarked at 3:30 a.m. local time, four hours after touching down in Liege.
Today, Ryanair defended its staff's behavior.
"The passengers were unreasonable and refused to follow the advice which would have allowed them to complete their journey," Ryanair spokesman Stephen McNamara said in a statement, according to The Associated Press.
McNamara said the crew only disembarked from the plane after passengers became "disruptive."