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Djokovic to be deported after losing final Australia visa appeal

January 16, 2022
 An Australian court dismissed Novak Djokovic’s appeal against a deportation order on Sunday, dashing the top-ranked tennis star’s hopes of playing at the Australian Open.
An Australian court dismissed Novak Djokovic’s appeal against a deportation order on Sunday, dashing the top-ranked tennis star’s hopes of playing at the Australian Open.

MELBOURNE — An Australian court dismissed Novak Djokovic’s appeal against a deportation order on Sunday, dashing the top-ranked tennis star’s hopes of playing at the Australian Open.

Three Federal Court judges upheld a decision made on Friday by the immigration minister Alex Hawke to cancel the 34-year-old Serb’s visa on public interest grounds.

The judges dismissed the claims by Djokovic’s defense that the rationale for the cancelation was “invalid” and “illogical”.

The decision likely means that Djokovic, who is not vaccinated against COVID-19, will remain in detention in Melbourne until he is deported. A deportation order usually also includes a three-year ban on returning to Australia.

This also marks an end to the world tennis No. 1's attempt to defend his Australian Open title and win a record 21st Grand Slam title.

In a brief statement after the verdict, Djokovic stated he was “deeply disappointed”, but also vowed to cooperate with the authorities.

“I will take some time to get some rest and recuperate before making further comments,” Djokovic said.

Hawke canceled the visa on the grounds that Djokovic’s presence in Australia may be a risk to the health and “good order” of the Australian public and “may be counterproductive to efforts at vaccination by others in Australia.

Djokovic’s visa was initially canceled on Jan. 6 at Melbourne’s airport hours after he arrived to compete in the first Grand Slam of 2022.

A border official canceled his visa after deciding Djokovic didn’t qualify for a medical exemption from Australia’s rules for unvaccinated visitors. — Euronews


January 16, 2022
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