Iranian refugee Mehdi Ali has thanked Novak Djokovic for speaking about refugees detained in Australia. Djokovic's visa was twice canceled and he was twice detained in Australia. Djokovic reflected on his time in detention during his appearance on Serbian TV RTS.
Djokovic refused to speak about himself as he wanted to put focus on those who have been detained for years. Ali has been in detention for the past nine years. "Thank you [Novak Djokovic] for speaking about us and trying to find a way to help us and others who are suffering," Ali tweeted.
Djokovic on the refugees in detention
"I wouldn't talk too much about [my detention in Australia].
The conditions were tough, of course. I've never experienced anything like it in my life and career. But that was the situation and I had to accept it," Djokovic told RTS. "I'd like to talk [instead] about the people who have been detained there much longer than I was, some as long as nine years.
The seven days I spent there were nothing compared to their nine years of detainment. I wish I was able to meet with them, but all of us who were detained in the hotel were prohibited from leaving our rooms. They are having a really hard time, just like other people all over the world who are in the same situation.
I'll try to find a way to help them. The situation is far from simple." During his interview, Djokovic confirmed that he is unvaccinated and said he doesn't want to take the COVID-19 vaccine because he doesn't know how it would impact his body.
“As an elite athlete, I want to triple-check everything that enters my body. If something changes for 0.5% in my body, I feel it. I am just cautious before making any decisions, I am taking my time and keeping my mind open. I will live with the consequences," Djokovic said.