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Russian Chess Grandmaster Karjakin slams his FIDE suspension as ‘crime’

The FIDE stated on March 21 that its Ethics and Disciplinary Commission (EDC) decided to suspend Russian grandmaster Karjakin from all competitions for the period of six months

MOSCOW, March 23. /TASS/. Russian Chess Grandmaster Sergey Karjakin told journalists on Wednesday he viewed his previously imposed six-month suspension ‘as a crime’ committed on behalf of the World Chess Federation (FIDE).

"I am very disappointed, but on the other hand, I was expecting it to happen," Karjakin told journalists. "It’s to last only for the half of a year. …We [athletes] were idling for almost one year without tournaments during the [COVID-19] pandemic."

"However, it’s bitter to realize that my imposed suspension coincides with the [2022 FIDE Candidates] Tournament in Madrid in June-July," he said. "I did my utmost preparing for this tournament, but it turned out now that it was to no avail. I am morally exhausted at the moment. I hope that this crime would not be left unaccounted for."

The Russian chess Grandmaster also said that he would possibly appeal FIDE’s decision against his suspension.

"I have a period of 21 days now to file an appeal," he said. "It will be submitted by my lawyers… We will keep fighting until the end and I will give it a try if it helps me to qualify for the world championship."

The FIDE stated on March 21 that its Ethics and Disciplinary Commission (EDC) decided to suspend Russian grandmaster Karjakin from all competitions for the period of six months.

According to the statement issued on Monday by FIDE, "Sergey Karjakin is found guilty of breach of article 2.2.10 of the FIDE Code of Ethics, and is sanctioned to a worldwide ban of six months from participating as a player in any FIDE rated chess competition, taking effect from the date of this decision, 21 March 2022."

On February 28, Karjakin published an open letter in which he supported Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine. The next day, FIDE condemned the Russian grandmaster for public announcement of his political stance, launching a disciplinary case against him.

Karjakin, 32, is currently 18th in the FIDE Rankings List. In 2016, the Russian chess player won the Candidates Tournament and then lost the World Chess Championship’s title encounter to Norwegian Magnus Carlsen.

Karjakin is the winner of the Chess World Cup 2015. He is also the world champion in Rapid Chess (2012) and Blitz (2016).