Novak Djokovic detained in Australia forward of decisive immigration listening to


Djokovic, the world’s top-ranked males’s tennis participant, has had his visa revoked twice by immigration officers as a result of he’s not vaccinated in opposition to Covid-19.

The tennis star was interviewed by the Australian Border Pressure at eight a.m. Saturday native time (four p.m. ET Friday). It was agreed between each events within the case that the situation would stay “undisclosed” to the general public so as to maintain the tennis star secure and keep away from a “media circus.”

Djokovic is predicted to spend Saturday night time in pre-immigration detention as his case is debated in Australia’s Federal Court docket.

On the preliminary listening to on Saturday, Justice David O’Callaghan, who’s presiding over the case, stated that the court docket will hear detailed oral arguments on Sunday.

If Djokovic’s attraction is profitable, that timetable would enable him to compete within the Australian Open draw on Monday.

The event, nonetheless, has largely been overshadowed by the high-profile saga off the court docket, pitting certainly one of tennis’s greatest stars in opposition to Australia’s authorities and public well being officers.

Djokovic’s visa was revoked for the second time on Friday by Alex Hawke, Australia’s immigration minister, however the authorities has agreed to not deport Djokovic over the weekend earlier than his case has concluded.

Djokovic’s lawyer, Nicholas Wooden instructed the court docket that the immigration minister had used his private energy to cancel the 34-year-old’s visa based mostly on grounds he would “excite anti-vax sentiment” ought to he stay in Australia, describing it as a “radically totally different method” within the authorities’s argument.

“The underlying new rationale is just not a direct danger to others, it is that Mr Djokovic being in Australia, in Melbourne specifically, by being right here will excite anti-vax sentiment. That is the purpose. A radically totally different method,” Wooden stated.

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Beneath present Australian legal guidelines, all worldwide arrivals are required to be vaccinated in opposition to Covid-19 — which Djokovic is just not — except they’ve a medical exemption.

Djokovic stated he was beneath the impression he might enter as a result of two unbiased panels related to Tennis Australia and the Victorian state authorities had granted him an exemption on the grounds that he had been contaminated with Covid-19 in December. The federal authorities argued that, beneath its guidelines, earlier an infection with Covid-19 is just not a legitimate cause for an exemption.

Djokovic’s authorized staff challenged the Friday ruling, and the case was transferred up the chain to Australia’s Federal Court docket.

After an emergency listening to Friday, Decide Kelly dominated that Djokovic must undergo an interview with the Australian Border Pressure at an undisclosed location.

Kelly ordered authorities to then place Djokovic in detention and escort him to his lawyer’s workplace whereas his case seems earlier than the Federal Court docket.

Djokovic’s visa was first revoked shortly after his arrival on January 5, however Kelly dominated earlier this week that border officers had been “unreasonable” once they canceled his preliminary visa to enter Australia. The decide then ordered Djokovic to be free of immigration detention.

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