Owak Djokovic is under house arrest at the Park Hotel ahead of his appeal against the revocation of his visa in the Federal Court of Australia on Sunday morning.
After meeting with his lawyers for several hours, Djokovic was taken to the same immigration hotel where he spent four nights last week in what he hopes will be the final night.
The world number one legal team is preparing for his case after Immigration Minister Alex Hawke decided Friday to revoke Djokovic’s visa for the second time on grounds of “health and good order”.
A brief procedural hearing took place on Saturday morning, where Justice David O’Callaghan confirmed that the case had been transferred from the Federal Circuit Court and the main hearing would take place on Sunday at 9.30 a.m. (10.30 p.m. Saturday UK time).
Djokovic is set to play his fellow Serbian Miomir Kekmanovic in their first round match of the Australian Open on Monday.
A timetable was agreed on Friday, with Djokovic being detained at 8 a.m. Saturday to hold a meeting with immigration officials before a meeting with his lawyers, also in custody.
The world number one is appealing against the decision on the grounds that it was affected by both jurisdictional error and irrationality, but the threshold of success is much higher than at the first hearing.
On Friday it emerged that Hawke based not on the legality or otherwise of Djokovic’s medical exemption, but on the potential for his continued presence in the country to pose a threat to public order, anti-vaccination sentiments.
Hawke cited Djokovic’s status as a “high-profile unaffiliated person who has publicly indicated that he is opposed to vaccination against COVID-19” and that he “publicly expressed anti-vaccination sentiment”. Of”.
Hawke said he believes not revoking visas could encourage Australians not to get the vaccine, adding to the pressure on healthcare.
“I think his current presence in Australia could pose a risk to the good order of the Australian community,” he said.
Hawke attached significant importance to Djokovic’s confession that he had participated in an interview with L’Equipe last month despite learning he had tested positive for Covid-19 and argued that the Australian could follow suit. Huh.
“I have also noted the fact that Mr Djokovic has, in the past, shown a clear disregard for the need to isolate after receiving a positive Covid-19 test result,” he said.
Police sprayed pepper on his supporters as a result of Djokovic’s release from detention on Monday, and Hawke cited the possibility of civil unrest, though his lawyers would argue Sunday that his deportation could result.
Meanwhile, Hawke dismissed Djokovic’s argument that revoking his visa would be considered politically motivated or would jeopardize the viability of the country hosting the Australian Open.
Djokovic waited as a judge overturned the original decision on Monday to find out whether Hawkes would use his powers to reintroduce the penalty.
And, just before 6pm (7am UK time) on Friday, Hawke issued a statement, saying: “Today I called for the cancellation of a visa held by Mr. Novak Djokovic on health and good order under Sections of the Migration Act. Exercised his power under 133C(3) on the ground that it is in the public interest to do so.
“This decision follows the orders of the Federal Circuit and Family Court on January 10, 2022, setting aside prior cancellation decisions based on procedural fairness.
“In making this decision, I have carefully considered the information provided to me by the Department of Home Affairs, the Australian Border Force and Mr. Djokovic.
“The Morrison Government is strongly committed to protecting Australia’s borders, particularly in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The decision means that Djokovic also faces a three-year ban from the country, which could mean he will never play at the Australian Open again, although this can be waived.
The situation has dominated global news since Djokovic was detained at Melbourne airport last Thursday morning, when Border Force officials concluded he did not have the correct paperwork to enter the country.
The nine-time Australian Open champion was exempted from strict coronavirus vaccination rules for arrival in the country on the basis of a positive test last month via Tennis Australia.
Two other persons – Czech player Renata Vorakova and an official – were later told with the same exemption that they could not remain in the country and were released before Judge Anthony Kelly ruled in Djokovic’s favor on Monday.
After being freed, Djokovic went straight to Melbourne Park and practiced every day, including on Friday morning, but his hopes of staying in the country faded as the week went on after revelations about his behavior following his positive test.
He also admitted that his manifesto falsely claimed that he had not traveled in the 14 days prior to his trip to Australia, which he attributed to the fault of his agent.
The way the Australian government has handled the situation has been severely criticized but public opinion has been in favor of Djokovic’s deportation.