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Novak Djokovic’s visa saga divides opinion



CNN has spoken to Australia’s former Deputy Immigration Minister Abul Rizvi to obtain the following guidance on the options that are open to Djokovic now that Australia’s Minister for Immigration, Alex Hawke, has canceled his visa. 

The Minister exercised his powers under section 133(C) of the Migration Act, which grants him authority to cancel visas under the grounds laid out in section 116 of the Migration Act. 

Djokovic and his legal team will now receive a ‘notice of the cancellation decision’ which will contain the relevant information concerning the grounds for his visa cancellation. 

Upon receiving this notice, Djokovic should be taken into detention as set out in section 189 of Australia’s Migration Act, which states that “If an officer knows or reasonably suspects that a person in the migration zone (other than an excised offshore place) is an unlawful non-citizen, the officer must detain the person.” 

Should that happen, in order to be released from detention, Djokovic’s lawyers will need to seek an interim order for the 34-year-old to be granted a bridging visa from the courts, with work rights so he can play in the Australian Open. 

For a period of 28 days, Djokovic’s legal team can now also make further representations to the minister himself to revoke the cancellation. 

Djokovic’s legal team can pursue both courses of action in conjunction, they are not exclusive. As his team has already made representation to the minister in this case though, it is unlikely they will go down that route again.  

The top priority now for Djokovic’s legal team will be to seek an interim order from the courts to get the 34-year-old out of detention (if and when that happens), so that he can play in the Australian Open.

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