France: World No 1 tennis player Novak Djokovic will be allowed to play French Open even if he is not vaccinated against COVID-19.
Sports minister of France Roxane Maracineanu said on Friday. France does not bar unvaccinated people from entering its territory but imposes tougher restrictions than on those who have had the shot, he said.
International Tennis Federation (ITF) protocols at major events meant an unvaccinated player would be entitled to enter France and participate in Roland Garros, which begins in May, the Sports minister was quoted by ESPN.
“Djokovic would not follow the same organisational arrangements as those who are vaccinated,” Maracineanu told FranceInfo radio. “But he will nonetheless be able to compete [at Roland Garros] because the protocols, the health bubble, allows it.”
Australia’s decision to revoke a visa Djokovic had been granted based on a medical exemption ahead of the Australian Open in Melbourne has stirred furore and it has the potential of turning into a diplomatic crisis between Australia and Serbia, stated reports in the Business Standard.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison had re-iterated on Thursday that nobody was above the country’s border rules as he ordered the cancellation of Djokovic’s visa. “Mr. Djokovic’s visa has been cancelled. Rules are rules, especially when it comes to borders. No one is above these rules,” Morrison had tweeted.