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Novak Djokovic to be deported from Australia after losing appeal against visa cancellation

16 January 2022 12:34 pm - 13     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Novak Djokovic will be deported from Australia ahead of the Australian Open after the full federal court dismissed the world No 1’s bid to restore his visa.

On Sunday the court rejected a challenge to the decision of Australian immigration minister, Alex Hawke, to cancel the visa on the basis Djokovic’s presence in Australia might risk “civil unrest” as he is a “talisman of anti-vaccination sentiment”.

Chief Justice James Allsop announced the court unanimously dismissed Djokovic’s application, with costs, but explained the decision of the court did not reflect on “the merits or wisdom of the decision”. Full reasons will follow at a later date, the Guardian reported.

The decision is a major setback for Djokovic’s quest to win a 10th Australian Open crown and a record 21st grand slam title.

Djokovic’s lawyers had argued this conclusion was not open to Hawke because it was “illogical, irrational or unreasonable” and the minister based the decision on Djokovic’s public statements about vaccination without actually seeking his views.

In fresh submissions overnight, Djokovic’s lawyers added that Hawke had failed to consider the impact on anti-vaccination sentiment if his visa were cancelled.

In court on Sunday, the minister’s counsel, Stephen Lloyd, argued Australia “must not be bound to suffer the presence of an alien for fear of what might happen if they were removed”.
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Use of the ministerial power to cancel a visa comes with a three-year ban on re-entering Australia, except in compelling circumstances, such as compassionate or Australian national interest grounds.

Djokovic arrived in Australia on the evening of 5 January. He believed that a visa granted on 18 November and a medical exemption approved by Tennis Australia and a Victorian government independent expert panel would be sufficient to enter Australia.

Djokovic’s visa was first cancelled by Australian Border Force hours after he arrived at Melbourne airport and he was taken to a detention hotel.

On Monday a federal circuit court judge restored Djokovic’s visa, concluding it was unreasonable for the ABF to renege on a deal to give him more time at the airport to address the exemption issue.

After a week’s deliberation, Hawke cancelled Djokovic’s visa again on Friday on the new ground that his presence might be a risk to “health and good order”.

The Australian prime minister, Scott Morrison, backed the cancellation decision, arguing that Australians had “made many sacrifices during this pandemic, and they rightly expect the result of those sacrifices to be protected”.

“This is what the minister is doing in taking this action,” Morrison said in a statement on Friday.

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  Comments - 13

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  • Misaru Sunday, 16 January 2022 12:56 PM

    A good lesson for Sri Lanka Health Authorities. No vaccine and no entry. In Sri Lanka if this joker was to play a exhibition match in Madamulana he would have been welcomed from the VIP gate, garlanded by the prince of Sir Lanka and whisked away by helicopter.

    Raj Sunday, 16 January 2022 12:57 PM

    Restricting someone's movement based on if he or she had a vaccine or not is wrong. Having a vaccine is someone personal choice. Governments should not be forcing on someone to have a vaccine! Even double plus booster vaccinated people get covid and spread to others. More you force more the resistance you are going to get!

    Fathima Lai Sunday, 16 January 2022 01:52 PM

    Raj, how vaccination can be a personal thing when they can spread the virus to others if they are infected?

    N SENA Sunday, 16 January 2022 12:57 PM

    HE SHOULD HAVE PREPARED WELL FOR THE TOURNAMENT. ONE HAS TO RESPECT AND FOLLOW THE RULES OF A COUNTRY. SO THERE IS NO COMPROMISE

    Kikazaru Sunday, 16 January 2022 12:57 PM

    Deported for not following health rules the county the joker was visiting. Well done Australia. Rules are rules and that is why we call them rules.

    Raj Sunday, 16 January 2022 01:04 PM

    Australian court system worked in a lightening speed on this case. Considering this is an immigration matter, it is rather unusual speed!

    Raj Sunday, 16 January 2022 01:07 PM

    The morons did not allow their own citizens to enter their country for a while!

    cineha Sunday, 16 January 2022 01:20 PM

    Rule of the Law.

    banana state Sunday, 16 January 2022 01:53 PM

    In Chi Lanka, this will never happen. Thugs, goons, morons, murderers and criminals always receive favoritism. They are above the law. Shame on you Chi Lanka.

    European Sunday, 16 January 2022 01:56 PM

    Raj: he was not forced to get vaccinated. It is his own choice not to. And choose therefore not to be able to enter Australia. That was his own choice. He also lied about his where abouts. And Australia protects his citizens!

    Raayin Sunday, 16 January 2022 03:09 PM

    That's the correct decision. He is thug who doesn't have any respect for others life. If vaccination is a personal choice, then accepting and accomodating is also the choice of the country.

    Vadivelu Yogaratnam Sunday, 16 January 2022 06:29 PM

    Rules are rules Australia is not Sri Lanka releasing convicted criminals, well done Australia.

    Sivaponniah Monday, 17 January 2022 07:00 PM

    :This fellow is a thug trying to challenge a Govt. He should have been deported on 5th January, if he was not vaccinated. He cannot have his own law when he is an alien in Australia. Kick him out soon. Well done job by the Court.


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