A government exception would allow Djokovic to play in Madrid without getting vaccinated

Novak Djokovic could not dispute the Australian Open for his refusal to be vaccinated, you will not be able to go to Roland Garros nor to US Open, but yes you can be present at the Mutua Madrid Open which takes place in the capital of Spain from next April 26. Unless the tournament itself establishes the vaccination mandatory for its participants or that the government change the sanitary requirements for entering the country, nothing will prevent the best tennis player in the world from playing the tournament of Madrid if you wish, as published The Newspaper of Spain.

"Any person, called one way or another, whatever job he has, whether he is a high-level athlete or not, he has to comply with the rules sanitary. And that is what any athlete who aspires to compete in our country will do: comply with the health regulations of Spain. That was the warning he gave to Djokovic the president of the Government, Pedro Sanchez, Last monday. But it's about a half truth.

The Ministerial Order INT/657/2020 that regulates the health requirements for the entry into Spain of citizens from countries outside the European Union pick up exceptions to the general principle of compulsory vaccination certificate, always complemented with a negative PCR test. These exceptions are in line with those established by the European Union as a whole.


one of those exceptions refers explicitly to "highly qualified workers whose work is necessary and cannot be postponed or carried out remotely, including participants in high-level sports events that take place in Spain", a definition in which Djokovic fits perfectly, without leaving room for the slightest doubt.

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Serbia, citizens of that country who wish to travel to Spain without a vaccination passport and taking advantage of any of the exceptions must request the approval of the Spanish embassy in Serbia. consulted by The Newspaper of Spain, said embassy has assured that from Belgrade "no authorization has been processed for unvaccinated high-level Serbian athletes."

Did Djokovic then enter Spain illegally for his participation in the Davis Cup or his visit to Marbella, both during the month of December? You don't have to. Although of Serbian nationality, the best tennis player in the world has fixed his habitual residence in Monaco (there are rumors, not confirmed, that he has recently moved to Marbella), so that in terms of international travel from there he is subject to the rules that apply to the Principality.

Free way

And, in such a case, the problems are even less for Djokovic when traveling to Spain or any other European country. Monaco is de facto integrated into the Schengen area of ​​free movement, so the conditions are the same as for Portuguese or French travellers. If you traveled to our country by car, you would not need any health document. If you did it by plane or ship, a negative result of a PCR test or a certificate of having overcome the disease in the six months prior to the trip would suffice.

It is clear, therefore, that Djokovic can enter Spain whenever he wants without the need to be vaccinated. But can he compete in a tournament held indoors? Today, yes. One way that it could not do so would be the implementation in the Community of Madrid of the covid passport requirement for entry into closed areas, as New York has already done and is going to do France in the coming days.

Doesn't seem like a very real threat to him, since the government of Isabel Diaz Ayuso has been one of the most reluctant to adopt the covid passport, which in fact is neither required nor has been required at any time in the Community to carry out any activity. And it does not seem that it will change, even less after verifying its ineffectiveness in curbing the spread of omicron which has already led communities such as Cantabria to give up its use.

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All this collides with the statements made on Tuesday by the Madrid Minister of Health, Enrique Ruiz Escudero: "If you are not vaccinated you will not be able to participate in a tournament in Madrid, since the rules are there to be followed and must be followed by all the people who come to play this tournament".

Sources from the Ministry of Health of the Community of Madrid have explained to The Newspaper of Spain that Ruiz Escudero wanted to refer to that Djokovic would have to be vaccinated if the Mutua Madrid Open organization so decides privately as a requirement for the participation of tennis players. And they admit that, if not, there would be no impediment for Djokovic to compete in said tournament.

Of course, the Mutua Madrid Open will not hinder the participation of the one who is currently the best tennis player in the world and one of the best in history. In fact, the tournament has already started with promotional campaigns and in them the face of Djokovic, winner of the 2011, 2016 and 2019 editions, appears. Free way for the Serbian to look for a wounded room.

The return to Spain of Carvajal

Real Madrid footballer Dani Carvajal tested positive for covid-19 during his stay in Saudi Arabia for the European Super Cup dispute. Along with him, about a dozen RFEF workers were also infected. The president of the federation, Luis Rubiales, explained that they had agreed with the Saudi and Spanish health authorities for the return of all of them in a private plane and in isolation, even without having passed the mandatory quarantine. Government sources clarify that this is not an exception, but rather a possibility that is included in the case isolation protocols: anyone infected has the right to return home as long as you do so in an isolated vehicle. It is usually a car, although this time it was a plane.


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