Why was Djokovic’s visa canceled?

This week, the world No.1 saw his entry visa canceled and the Serbian found himself placed in a Melbourne detention center, a move that sparked fury from his family and fans.

It was in a cramped room that he was forced to spend the day of Friday, Orthodox Christmas Day.

It is still difficult to establish what exactly happened on Wednesday night when the 34-year-old presented his passport upon arrival in Melbourne.

According to the Australian government, the papers of “Djoker” did not meet the conditions required for vaccination against Covid-19. These are more severe for foreign nationals entering the country than those imposed on Australians who wish to benefit from an exemption from vaccination.

The main difference is that it is possible, in Australia, to benefit from a temporary exemption from vaccination by proving to have been contaminated by the coronavirus in the previous six months.

But this possibility does not apply to foreigners entering Australia.

However, it has not been confirmed that Djokovic cited a previous infection to justify his not having been fully vaccinated.

The Australian Tennis Federation, Tennis Australia, and the Government of the State of Victoria have in some cases implemented vaccination exemptions in order to participate in the tournament.

According to Tennis Australia, these rules require that any exemptions be approved by two expert medical committees.

But “an exemption granted by the government of the state of Victoria to play tennis in this state is totally different from any exemption or condition of entry into Australia,” said Karen Andrews, Australia’s Home Secretary on Friday.

To enter Australia, she explained, you need a visa but also meet the entry requirements: a negative test and full vaccination or medical proof of contraindication to vaccination.

The federation questioned

Government sources told ABC Channel that Djokovic gave border police officers a medical waiver on Tennis Australia letterhead, signed by the federation’s chief medical officer.

The latter was refused, according to them.

The government said it had already warned Tennis Australia about this.

In a letter to the media, Health Minister Greg Hunt wrote to Tennis Australia Managing Director Craig Tiley in November to warn him that no exemption from vaccination due to recent Covid-19 contamination would be expected. granted to players wishing to enter Australia.

“This was made clear to Tennis Australia,” confirmed Ms Andrews on Friday.

The Federation did not give more details on this subject, but defended the process of granting exemptions. “For tennis players, it’s a process that goes beyond what anyone coming to Australia could experience,” Tiley said this week.

Two other players or staff participating in the Australian Open are also under investigation, the Home Secretary confirmed.

The “Djoker” will be fixed on his chances of obtaining a visa and defending his title at the Australian Open now depend on the decision of a federal court judge. The hearing is scheduled to take place on Monday.

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Why was Djokovic’s visa canceled?