Home Politics The silent protest of the German chess president

The silent protest of the German chess president


The Russian Arkady Dworkowitsch remains President of the World Chess Federation Fide. The 50-year-old, who was a member of the Russian government from 2000 to 2018, was confirmed in office on Sunday in Chennai, India, with a clear majority of 157:16 votes for another four years. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov described Dvorkovich’s re-election as “very good news”, according to the Russian media. Dvorkovich ran alongside former Indian world champion Viswanathan Anand, who is now his deputy.

The German Chess Federation (DSB) had campaigned for a new start at the world association and for the candidacy of the Ukrainian Andrej Baryschpolez. The 31-year-old grandmaster stands “credibly for a new beginning in Fide. Pushing back Russian influence in international chess and transparent and open leadership of the association are concerns that have our full support,” said DSB President Ullrich Krause.

Video recordings show Krause apparently being the only one present after Dvorkovich’s re-election and not applauding the Fide president like the other participants. Dvorkovich’s replacement had only been demanded by a few associations. In addition to the Ukraine and Germany, such voices also came from Scandinavia and the Baltic States, among others.

After the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine, Fide moved the 44th Chess Olympiad from Russia to Chennai, India, excluding Russian teams. Russian chess players are only allowed to compete under the Fide flag. In addition, former World Cup challenger Sergei Karjakin has been banned for six months for supporting the Russian invasion.

The Fide electoral commission had approved a total of four teams of candidates. Baryschpolez, who works for a management consultancy in Los Angeles, had teamed up with Peter Heine Nielsen, the Danish coach of world champion Magnus Carlsen. Bachar Kouatly, a French grandmaster of Syrian origin and former Fide deputy president, withdrew his candidacy on Sunday.