Tennis-Djokovic stuck in airport, waiting for Australian government visa decision Reuters

© Reuters.File photo: Tennis-Davis Cup semi-finals-Serbia vs. Croatia-Magic City of Madrid, Spain-December 3, 2021 Serbia’s Novak Djokovic celebrates winning with Croatia’s Marin Cilic Reuters/Suzanne Vera

MELBOURNE (Reuters)-Novak Djokovic was trapped at an Australian airport overnight and caught in a political whirlpool. Whether to respect the medical exemption required by the world’s number one vaccine, or He was sent home because of a visa error.

14 hours after taking off from Dubai, Djokovic landed at Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport at around 11.30pm local time on Wednesday night.

But after learning that his team has applied for a visa that does not allow medical exemption, he is still waiting for permission to enter the country to participate in the Australian Open.

This prompted the local government of Victoria, where the Open was held, to say that it would not support Djokovic’s application and put his fate in the hands of the federal government and Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Djokovic’s father, Srjan, told the Serbian media that his son was waiting alone in a room at the armedly guarded airport, waiting for the final decision on whether he could enter the country.

Morrison’s government decided to grant Djokovic a medical exemption from vaccination to participate in the British Open, and the player will bid for a record 21st Grand Slam title at the Open, so Morrie Sen faced huge opposition.

Australia, especially Victoria, has experienced the longest cumulative lockdown in the world, and the outbreak of the Omicron variant brought the number of cases to a record level.

After strong opposition, Morrison stated that Djokovic’s participation has not been completed and he must meet the requirements of the federal government, which is responsible for international borders and visas, not part of the exemption process.

Morrison stated shortly before Djokovic’s arrival that there were “no special rules” for his exemption.

Morrison said at a media conference earlier: “If the evidence is insufficient, then he will not be treated differently from anyone else, and he will take the next flight home.”

Visa package

Djokovic came in on an Emirates flight, but when border officials contacted the Victorian government to ask whether the state would officially support the world’s number one visa, the government said it would not.

“The federal government has asked if we will support Novak Djokovic’s visa application to enter Australia,” said Victorian Acting Minister of Sports Jara Pulford.

“We will not provide Novak Djokovic with personal visa application support to participate in the 2022 Australian Open Grand Slam.

“We have always been very clear about two points: visa approval is the federal government’s business, and medical exemption is the doctor’s business.”

It is not clear whether the federal government will allow him to enter the country. The border guard did not respond to a request for comment.

The Australian Tennis Association and government officials acted quickly to emphasize that Djokovic, who had expressed his opposition to COVID-19 vaccination, did not receive any preferential treatment.

Angry australian

The Serb has previously refused to disclose his vaccination status. He has won nine championships at Melbourne Park, including the past three. He confirmed on Tuesday that he had received a vaccination exemption, allowing him to participate in the Australian Open, which began on January 17.

Australian tennis superstar Rod Laver has warned that Djokovic may face hostility from the local people. The main performance venue in Melbourne Park, Victoria is named after him.

“I think it might become ugly,” Laver told News Corporation (NASDAQ:). “I think people in the Victorian era would think,’Yes, I would love to see him play and play, but there are also right ways and wrong ways.’

“Yes, you are a great player, you have performed and won a lot of games, so it can’t be physical. So what’s the problem?”

Melbourne native Christine Wharton (Christine Wharton) said that this is a kind of “disgrace.”

“We all did the right thing. We all went out and got shots and boosters. We had a guy from overseas. Suddenly he was exempted and can play. I think it’s an absolute shame. I I won’t watch it.”

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