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Thursday, January 26, 2023

Djokovic’s father poses with tennis followers waving pro-Russia flags | Tennis Information

The video emerged as police eliminated 4 folks from the Australian Open event for displaying Russian flags.

Novak Djokovic’s father has been filmed posing with followers brandishing pro-Russian flags on the Australian Open in scenes Ukraine’s ambassador slammed as “a shame”.

The diplomat’s touch upon Thursday got here a day after the Serbian participant had simply booked his place within the event semifinal with a straight-set thumping of Russian opponent Andrey Rublev in Rod Laver Enviornment.

After the match a gaggle of followers unfurled Russian flags close to the stadium, together with one that includes President Vladimir Putin’s face, chanting pro-Russian slogans.

A Victoria police spokeswoman mentioned the 4 folks have been kicked out of the event for revealing “inappropriate flags and symbols and threatened safety guards”. Police have been known as and so they have been ejected from Melbourne Park.

“Gamers and their groups have been briefed and reminded of the occasion coverage concerning flags and symbols and to keep away from any scenario that has the potential to disrupt,” Tennis Australia mentioned in an announcement. “We proceed to work carefully with occasion safety and legislation enforcement businesses.”

On January 17, the second day of the Australian Open, flags from Russia and Belarus have been banned from Melbourne Park after they have been introduced into the stands by spectators the day earlier than. Usually, flags will be displayed throughout matches at Melbourne Park. However Tennis Australia reversed that coverage for the 2 international locations concerned within the invasion of Ukraine that started practically a yr in the past, saying the flags have been inflicting disruption.

A video later posted to a pro-Russian Australian YouTube account confirmed Djokovic’s father Srdjan posing with a person holding a flag with Putin’s image.

It was captioned: “Novak Djokovic’s father makes daring political assertion.”

Serbian tennis reporters confirmed it was Djokovic’s father and the Melbourne Age newspaper reported he mentioned in Serbian: “Lengthy stay Russia.”

Ukraine’s ambassador to Australia and New Zealand, Vasyl Myroshnychenko, mentioned the flag-waving was “shameful”.

“It’s a full bundle. Among the many Serbian flags, there may be: a Russian flag, Putin, Z-symbol, so-called Donetsk Folks’s Republic flag,” he tweeted with a hyperlink to the video.

One other man was photographed by AFP information company contained in the stadium throughout Djokovic’s match with a pro-war “Z” image T-shirt – related to help for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Russian and Belarusian gamers have usually competed underneath a impartial white flag as independents, as is the case on the Australian Open.

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