The Days and Knights of Tom Murphy Chess players and hustlers come from all over to be part of Dupont Circle's famed scene – Chess Players in Dupont Circle/Wikimedia The Days and Knights of Tom Murphy Chess players and hustlers come from all over to be part of Dupont Circle's famed scene – Chess Players in Dupont Circle/Wikimedia

KSA denies Qatari claim on displaying flag in chess tournament

Tue, Dec. 26, 2017
CAIRO – 26 December 2017: Saudi Arabia denied the claim that it “demanded that Qatari players not display the flag of Qatar” during the World Rapid and Blitz Chess Championships hosted by Saudi Arabia in Riyadh between December 26 and December 30.

General Sports Authority (GSA) of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia said in a statement that Saudi Arabia welcomed the Qatari players and granted them visas.

According to the statement, the GSA informed the World Chess Federation (FIDE) about the Qatari players, and enrolled their names to join the championship.

The Qatar Chess Federation had announced that their top national team will not participate in the championship, Anadolu agency reported on Friday.

The Federation’s Secretary-General, Mohamed al-Modiahki, said that the organizers violated international law when they “demanded that the players not raise the country’s flag,” QNA reported.

On June 5, Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates severed diplomatic ties with Qatar and demanded that Doha meets a list of 13 demands in order for dialogue to be resumed.

They issued 13 demands to Doha – then shortened them to six principles, including closing Al-Jazeera channel, curbing relations with Iran and shutting the Turkish military base.

Saudi Arabia had closed Qatar’s only land border, Salwa, in December, and imposed a travel ban on Qatari airspace.
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