by Marlon Bernardino
MANILA---The Chess Federation of Russia (CFR) previously requested to join the Asian Chess Federation (ACF), and their submitted application was approved, as the FIDE press office announced on Wednesday, February 22.
Last Tuesday, February 21, the FIDE Council reviewed the report of the Constitutional Commission. Upon the request of the Chess Federation of Russia (CFR), they joined the Asian Chess Federation. According to the International Chess Federation (FIDE), the Asian Chess Federation is expected to decide on this request at its General Assembly this coming February 28 in Abu Dhabi.
The Chess Federation of Russia’s membership will be transferred to the ACF, since a federation cannot belong to two continents at the same time. FIDE said that following the examination and consideration of all legal aspects regarding this issue, the FIDE Council made two major decisions:
"To rename Zone 1.6 (Russia) as Zone 3.8, as part of Asia, effective May 1, 2023, given that the Asian Chess Federation confirms it accepts the Chess Federation of Russia as a member in their General Assembly."
"To adopt a series of additional measures to protect those players who decide to leave the Russian Chess Federation at this point and join any European chess federation. Players previously belonging to the CFR will be allowed to represent their new federation with immediate effect, starting the next day after submitting their application, without any restrictions. "All transfer fees, to FIDE or CFR, are waived."
Australia, China, India, Japan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the Philippines, Singapore, and many others are the National Chess Federation’s member states. Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan is the reigning president of the Asian Chess Federation.
FIDE barred athletes from Russia and Belarus from participating in international tournaments on March 16. However, the organization (FIDE) allowed representatives of these countries to play individually under the flag and logo of FIDE.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) issued recommendations to international sports federations to ban athletes from Russia and Belarus from participating in the international tournament on February 28 due to the special military operation initiated by Russia in Ukraine.
The majority of global sports federations decided to bar athletes from Russia and Belarus from all international sports tournaments following the IOC recommendations back in late February.-Marlon Bernardino-