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Say No to Sochi!

For more information about chess for over-50s, please see our Seniors news, our Seniors calendar and our Seniors introduction page.

The FIDE Calendar states that the 2023 individual Seniors World Championships will be held in Sochi, Russia, though stating no dates. This decision must be changed!

We start today a campaign on this website to Stop Sochi Seniors and hope that all senior players will support it, by calling on FIDE (through their national federations) to cancel the award of the event to Russia and find a new venue.

We also hope that all participants in the European Senior Team Championships and 2022 World Seniors individual championships later this year will sign petitions to make it clear to FIDE that they will not play next year in Russia.

We consider that it is totally unacceptable for any FIDE chess event to be held in Russia until the Russian invasion in the Ukraine ends with the total withdrawal of Russian forces and the payment of compensation to Ukraine.

It is also very concerning that no venue has yet been announced for the 2023 Worl,d Senior Team Championships. All information currently on the website of the FIDE Events Commission, which is responsible for awards, seems to be a year or more out of date.

What you can do right now is contact your national chess federation asking them to put pressure on FIDE by making it clear that players in your country will not go to Russia. Tell them to demand that bids for both these championships be reopened without delay, while there is still time for new organisers to be found.

If there is a member of the Events Commission in your country, you could also email him or her asking for up to date information and making clear you will boycott Russia.

PS: When I posted about this matter on the English Chess Forum, International Arbiter David Sedgwick informed readers that this matter did come up in Chennai:

"Dvorkovich was asked about the tournament scheduled to be held in Sochi and he said that this would be reviewed in the coming months. I think he accepts that it cannot take place there unless the war comes to an end soon."