The Australian government has canceled Novak Djokovic’s visa again, just days before the start of the Australian Open tennis tournament, which the world’s top male tennis player has won nine times.
Alex Hawke, Immigration Minister and a close ally of Prime Minister Scott Morrison, said: “Today I exercised my power under section 133C 3) of the Immigration Act to revoke visas due to Mr. Novak Djokovic holds for reasons of health and good order, on the basis that to do so is in the public interest. “
Hawke is expected to deport Djokovic, who is appealing the visa cancellation. At a late-night trial, the tennis star was asked to return to detention on Saturday ahead of Sunday’s appeal hearing.
Djokovic entered the country as an unvaccinated non-resident last week and received a medical exemption to compete in the Grand Slam event after contracting Covid-19 in December. But the Australian Border Force believes the UK has failed to adhere to its strict policies.
After five days of deliberation, Hawke said on Friday: “The Morrison government is firmly committed to protecting Australia’s borders, especially in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Morrison later said: “Australians have made a lot of sacrifices during this pandemic, and they really expect the results of those sacrifices to be preserved. This is what the Minister is doing in taking this action today. ”
Djokovic, the protector Australian Open champion, is competing to be the most successful male tennis player in the sport’s modern era. But the timing of the decision, announced Friday night, gave his lawyers little time to file an appeal ahead of the Grand Slam event, which begins on Monday.
If the appeal is successful, he will be free to play in the tournament. Djokovic’s lawyers have not commented on the second visa revocation.
The player’s first appeal was expedited so it was heard within four days of his visa being cancelled. With the tournament schedule yet to be announced, Djokovic is yet to compete in the opening round, in which he will face fellow Serb Miomir Kecmanovic.
Simon Jeans, an immigration attorney, told ABC it was still possible that Djokovic, who went public against compulsory vaccination, was able to win an appeal against the decision even though Hawke used his personal powers to rescind the visa. “There was a risk of an error of law and they overturned the decision,” he said.
Djokovic won his first appeal in federal court on Monday against the country’s border guards’ initial decision to cancel his visa on procedural grounds. Anthony Kelly, the judge who overturned the visa cancellation based on the conduct of Australian Border Force officials, is likely to also hear the appeal a second time.
However, the documents submitted by the Serbian tennis player to win that appeal have attracted closer scrutiny of his actions and the credibility of his vaccination exemption being used. used to enter Australia.
Djokovic admitted on Wednesday that his agent had wrongly filled in a travel declaration and that he participated in an interview and photographed in Serbia despite the positive test result for Covid.
A poll conducted by News Corp of 61,000 people this week found that 84% of respondents supported the expulsion of the tennis player.
The controversy is still going on criticize Morrison in an election year. His government has been fighting to contain the Covid outbreak and ease supply chain problems caused by the pandemic, which has left shelves empty in supermarkets.
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