Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic will be expelled from Australia because he failed to provide sufficient evidence to justify entering the country, although he was exempted from participating in Australia this month for medical reasons Open tennis tournament, but not vaccinated against Covid-19.
Djokovic landed at Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport overnight and was detained by the Australian Border Force, which controls immigration from the country. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has warned that if the tennis player cannot prove to the authorities why he is exempt from vaccination (which is a condition of entering Australia), he will “take the next flight.” Go home”, and local media reported that he had submitted a visa application by mistake.
After being detained for several hours, Djokovic, who had access to a mobile phone, was told that he would be deported on Thursday morning.
The border guard said in a statement: “The ABF can confirm that Mr. Djokovic failed to provide appropriate evidence to meet Australia’s entry requirements, and his visa was subsequently cancelled.” “Did not hold a valid visa or Non-citizens whose visas have been cancelled will be detained and deported from Australia.”
Morrison Tweet Thursday: “Mr. Djokovic’s visa has been cancelled. The rules are the rules, especially when it comes to our borders. No one can go beyond these rules.”
The Prime Minister said on Wednesday that when the defending Australian Open men’s champion was already on his way to the country: “If a medical professional has provided a medical exemption and it has been provided to him as a condition for him to board that plane, then when he arrives in Australia At this time, this will have to pile up.”
Reuters reported that Djokovic will legally challenge the decision to cancel the visa and can stay in the country for isolation until the problem is resolved.
Djokovic opposed the mandatory Covid-19 vaccination. The decision to allow him to participate in the competition as an unvaccinated person triggered a fierce response from the health authorities and most of the Australian public. The country’s Covid numbers have soared to record levels, while its test system is under pressure.
The Australian Tennis Association said on Wednesday that after a “rigorous review process” by two independent expert groups, one of whom was appointed by the Victorian Health Department, Djokovic refused to confirm his vaccination status and was granted an exemption. The venue for the Australian Open.
Happy New Year! I wish you health, love and happiness at all times, and may you feel love and respect for all sentient beings on this beautiful planet.
I had a wonderful time with my loved ones during the break, and today I will go to Down Under with an exemption. Let’s go for 2022! pic.twitter.com/e688iSO2d4
— Novak Djokovic (@DjokerNole) January 4, 2022
However, the Australian government issued a severe threat, stating that immunity does not guarantee his entry into Australia. Interior Minister Karen Andrews said that Djokovic and any exempted players need to provide “acceptable evidence” that they cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons, just like other travelers entering Australia.
Tournament director Craig Terry defended the decision to exempt Djokovic and a few other players. He said officials have “exceeded” the standard immigration procedures for unvaccinated travelers entering Australia. “In the end this is the decision of medical experts,” he said.
He reiterated that other players, fans and staff of tennis matches must be fully vaccinated, “exemptions should be granted unless there is a real reason” to ensure the safety of participants.
This caused a strong reaction in Victoria. The state recently got rid of some of the strictest lockdown restrictions in the world, and the government required some workers to be fully vaccinated.
The local media referred to Djokovic as “Novax” and compared it to the restrictions imposed on England and Australian cricketers in the Ashes Series held in Australia this summer.