The Djokovic case is grabbing the attention of the press and fans in recent days. The harshness of the Australian authorities with the Serbian has gone around the world, despite the fact that This is not an unprecedented decision, since the oceanic country has a long history of conflicts related to its border control.
He is not the first celebrity to face harsh treatment. British far-right commentator Katie Hopkins expelled from Australia last year after breaking quarantine rules.
In 2007, American rapper Snoop Dogg was denied entry due to his criminal record. And in 2015, the Australian authorities threatened to euthanize Pistol and Boo, the Yorkshire Terrier dogs owned by actors Johnny Depp and Amber Heard, who had sneaked into the country on the couple’s private jet. The dogs survived; the romance of the couple, no.
The Djokovic saga began earlier this month, when he arrived in Melbourne to play the Australian Open, hoping to cement his place in history as the first man to win 21 Grand Slam tournaments.
But he ended up spending four nights confined to an immigration detention hotel after officials rejected his exemption. to Australia’s strict vaccination regulations and cancel your visa.
On Monday, he won a procedural court battle that allowed him to stay and practice, before Hawke made his decision on Friday.
Djokovic is expected to appeal, but he is running out of time and options. Australia grants unusual authority to its immigration minister, which many refer to as the minister’s “powers of god.”
Hawke can essentially override the courts to deport people, with only a few grounds for any appeal.. Kian Bone, an immigration attorney for Macpherson Kelley, said Djokovic may not have time to make an effective appeal before he has to play, which would force him to resign.
“Australia has always had highly codified and highly legislated immigration policies“, Bone said. “And compared to other countries, we give extraordinary power to the immigration minister.”
Australia’s modern history began as a recipient of harsh immigration policies, as Britain sent tens of thousands of criminals to Australian penal colonies for 80 years, before ending the practice in 1868.
When Australia formed its first federal government in 1901, one of his first work orders was to pass the Immigration Restriction Act, designed to keep people of color out of Asia, the Pacific Islands and elsewhere.
The “White Australia” policy continued for decades before the last remnants were removed in the 1970s. One of the victims was Filipino-American Lorenzo Gamboa, who enlisted in the US Army in 1941 and was evacuated to Australia when the Philippines fell to Japan.
He married an Australian and had two children. When he was discharged from the army, he attempted to return to Australia but was denied permanent residency and was forced to leave. His case sparked outrage among Filipinos and caused a major diplomatic rift with Australia.
He was finally allowed to settle in Australia in 1952. In 2001, Australia launched the “Pacific Solution”, whereby asylum seekers trying to reach Australia by boat were sent to detention centers in Papua New Guinea or Nauru. instead of allowing them to remain on Australian soil. Hundreds of asylum seekers were housed on the islands until the number dwindled in recent years. There are still dozens left.
Journalist Behrouz Boochani, who had previously fled Iran, was held against his will on the islands for six years. Using a smuggled phone and posting on social media, Boochani detailed unsanitary conditions, hunger strikes and violence in detention camps, as well as deaths caused by medical negligence and suicide.
He eventually used his phone to write a book, sending excerpts in Farsi to a translator on WhatsApp. Entitled “No Friend But the Mountains,” the book won a prestigious Australian award, the Victorian Prize for Literature. But he has never been able to travel to Australia to collect his prize.
In 2019 Boochani escaped to New Zealand, where he now lives. New Zealand maintains close ties with its neighbor, but Australia’s tough stance on immigration has caused tensions, particularly in recent years after Australia began to enforce stricter policies on deporting criminals to New Zealand.
Last year, New Zealand reluctantly agreed to repatriate suspected Islamic State militant Suhayra Aden and her two young children, who had been detained in Turkey.
Aden had lived most of his life in Australia and had dual Australian and New Zealand nationality. But Australia withdrew his nationality under its anti-terrorism laws, leaving New Zealand to bear the responsibility for his repatriation.
Despite protests from New Zealand, the Australian government, led by Prime Minister Scott Morrison, stood by its decision on Aden. He has been equally adamant about Djokovic.
“The Morrison Government is strongly committed to protecting Australia’s borders, especially in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Hawke said in a statement Friday.
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Snoop Dogg and Johnny Depp’s dogs, in the same situation as Djokovic