FIDE to Kasparov: one more week

1/20/2005 – The world chess organisation has reacted to Garry Kasparov's withdrawal from the reunification cycle, stating that the bank guarantees Kasparov had demanded would have been in place on January 25. It is impossible, says FIDE, to secure high prize funds without the necessary time, and when the participants demand excessive financial guarantees.

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PRESS RELEASE - 20 Jan 2005

World Chess Championship Match 2005
FIDE regrets Kasparov’s decision to withdraw from playing against Kasimdzhanov in April and pledges to continue its efforts for solutions concerning World Championship funding


The World Chess Federation (FIDE: http://www.fide.com) regrets Garry Kasparov’s announcement to withdraw from playing the World Chess Championship match against Rustam Kasimdzhanov at the scheduled dates of April 25th to May 14th 2005.

During the latest FIDE congress in Spain, the Turkish Chess Federation expressed its strong desire to organize this match. FIDE informed the General Assembly that the Turkish bid was actively supported by the former world champion Garry Kasparov who urged FIDE to ”give somebody else the authority to act unless FIDE already has the money from the Dubai organizer”. On 2 December 2004, FIDE entered discussions with the Turkish Chess Federation and requested the necessary bank guarantees before signing any agreement or issuing player’s contracts. Garry Kasparov had made it clear several times that he would not sign anything before he receives ”acceptable” financial guarantees.

During the negotiations with the Turkish Chess Federation Garry Kasparov and World Champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov were kept fully informed about all developments. They knew that:

a) FIDE authorized the Turkish Chess Federation on December 7 to secure the necessary funds in order to organize this match in Turkey with an initial deadline of 29 December.

b) On 3 January 2005 the Deputy Prime Minister of the Turkish Republic, Mr Mehmet Ali Sahin, informed FIDE in writing that Turkey is ready to provide all necessary guarantees for the organization of the match, including the prize fund of 1.000.000 USD, organizational costs, etc.

c) Following this letter of the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister, FIDE gave the Turkish Chess Federation a new deadline of 18 January for the issue of bank guarantees of 200.000 USD for each player and 50.000 USD for FIDE. The total amount of 1.272.000 USD would have to be transferred to FIDE’s bank account no later than 25 March 2005.

Meanwhile, both players agreed that the match would begin on 25 April 2005.

A few days ago, the representative lawyer of the Turkish Chess Federation, Mr Cemal Dursun, informed Garry Kasparov that no bank guarantees could be issued before 25 January. After receiving this information, Garry Kasparov sent an email to FIDE on 18 January announcing that he is no longer available to participate in this match for the dates that had been agreed (25 April – 14 May).

It is obvious that we are facing again a stalemate situation concerning the realization of the Prague Agreement, a situation for which FIDE cannot be held accountable. The official letter of the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister represents for FIDE a strong guarantee in order to provide the Turkish organizers with the necessary time to deal with the formal procedures concerning the issuance of the required financial guarantees.

Garry Kasparov, who for a long time has sincerely co-operated towards the realization of the Prague Agreement, should have at least shown his respect to his opponent Rustam Kasimdzhanov and his appreciation for the efforts of the Turkish Chess Federation and the Turkish Government before announcing his unilateral decision to withdraw from this match.

It has to be clear to everyone that it is impossible to secure such high prize funds from legitimate sponsors, acceptable to FIDE and the IOC, without providing the candidate organizers with the necessary time to complete their efforts, especially when the government of a country is the guarantor for the organization of the match. It is even more difficult to secure these prize funds when the participants demand excessive financial guarantees before committing themselves in writing.

FIDE continues to seek solutions concerning the funding of the World Chess Championship, in co-operation with its national federations and in close contact with all interested parties.


About FIDE

The World Chess Federation (FIDE: http://www.fide.com) is recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as the supreme body responsible globally for the game of chess and its championships. FIDE organizes the World Chess Championship as well as all World Championships for women, junior and youth categories, the bi-annual Chess Olympiad and it also publishes the official FIDE Rating List (currently No.1 is Garry Kasparov of Russia). FIDE has a membership of 160 national chess federations and it retains offices in Greece and Russia.

For more information contact:
Federation Internationale des Echecs (FIDE)
Mr George Mastrokoukos
tel.: (+30) 2109212047, fax: (+30) 2109212859, email: office(at)fide.com


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