The Kremlin has criticized the chess federation for banning grandmaster Sergei Karjakin because of his pro-war stance

The Kremlin has spoken out against FIDE’s decision to ban chess star Sergei Karjakin – the Russian will be banned from playing for six months following his comments on his country’s invasion of Ukraine

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The Kremlin is calling for the ban on chess star Sergey Karjakin to be lifted. The International Chess Federation (FIDE) has banned it Russian Grandmaster banned from competing for six months after his comments on the invasion of Russia Ukraine.

Dmitry Peskov, spokesman for President Putin and chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Russian Chess Federation, called for the decision to be changed. He told the Russian news agency TASS that chess “must be beyond politics”.

Peskov added: “We regret this. We call on FIDE to reconsider this decision and still stay out of politics, thereby confirming the international standing of this chess organization. Of course we do not agree with this decision.”

Karjakin, 32, has drawn the ire of the chess world with his comments on Russia’s ongoing attack on Ukraine. In a number of posts, he repeatedly accused Ukraine and the President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of committing war crimes for which he is now being punished. “Sergey Karjakin is found guilty of violating Article 2.2.10 of the FIDE Code of Ethics and is punished with a worldwide ban of six months from participating as a player in any FIDE-rated chess competition, effective from the date of this decision, 21 March 2022”, the governing bodysaid the statement.

“Remarks by Sergey Karjakin on the ongoing military conflict in Ukraine have prompted a significant number of reactions on social media and elsewhere, mostly negative to the opinions expressed.” Karjakin, who was born in Crimea and lived in Ukraine until 2009, criticized the decision and claims he has no regrets expressing his point of view.

Sergey Karjakin has been banned


TASS/PA images)

“An expected but no less shameful decision by FIDE,” said Karjakin. “All sports selections have been trampled on, the fundamental principle that sport is out of politics has been trampled on. Above all, I am a patriot of my country first and an athlete second. When I think back to the situation when I supported the President Russia, the people and the army I would have done the same! I regret nothing.”

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