Evgeny Sveshnikov: "I Want To Know the Names Of Those Who Approved Kasparov's Ban"

Время публикации: 05.11.2015 00:55 | Последнее обновление: 05.11.2015 09:13

GM Evgeny Sveshnikov disagrees with the FIDE decision to ban Garry Kasparov and Ignatius Leong to hold any position within FIDE for two years.

"I have a lot of questions for Kasparov, I disagree with him on a number of issues, but accusing him of bribing someone and prohibiting him from pursuing chess activities just beats everything, - the veteran player who just recently turned back to representing Russian flag told Chess-News. - The proof to his "villainy" hasn't been published anywhere. There's nothing wrong with him signing the contract with Leong and allocating money for chess development in Asia. I don't consider buying some federation's votes in such a way to be a crime.

If one of the presidential candidates earmarks money to the federation for the development of chess, it's not a crime. Crime is when that candidate secretly passes money some federation delegate in order to make him/her vote in one's own favor. As a minimum, they have to check what was that money allocated through the contract spent on. But we are not really told anything about that, we are only told: Kasparov is a criminal! I want to know concretely who and what for has disqualified the former world champion. I want to know the names of the FIDE Ethics Committee who approved such a decision..."         

Despite this, Sveshnikov gives his preference to Ilyumzhinov in the presidential elections. According to him, Kasparov mixes chess and politics and he only needed the aforementioned post "to satisfy his own political ambitions". 



The FIDE Ethics Commission

The FIDE Ethics Commission (EC) consists of Francois Strydom (chair, South Africa), Pedro Dominguez Brito (Dominican Republic), Rajesh Hari Joshi (Nepal), Ion-Serban Dobronauteanu (Romania), and Willy Iclicki (Liechtenstein). http://tinyurl.com/p23qvdl

At least the first two are lawyers. Joshi is the head of the Nepalese chess federation. Dobronauteanu is currently ECU deputy president (his profession is in agribusiness and wine production), and due to his being on the 2014 Azmaiparashvili ticket, Kasparov and Leong tried (but failed) to get him to recuse himself from the EC in the preliminary process. Iclicki is a longtime chess politician and organizer (and is a diamond dealer), serving as FIDE Treasurer most of the 1990s. For what it's worth, Danailov considers him hopelessly biased.

The previous Ethics Commission, which heard the preliminary process, had 2 judges (Rivello and Alt), a former head of the Jamaican Bar Association (Wilkinson, who was on Kasparov's ticket and so recused himself), Dobronauteanu, and Margaret Murphy who was the chair of the Electoral Commission (and thus was also recused).

The motivated Ethics Commission decision must exist by now, though FIDE is under no obligation to publish it. Back with the ICGA vs Rybka case (concluded in April), Strydom set down that the EC policy was that decisions would not be published unless (at least) one of the parties asked, or the EC thought there was sufficient reason for publicity (which is likely the case here). Moreover, also Strydom set down that the parties themselves should not make the Motivation public without prior permission from the EC (this is similar to Court of Arbitration for Sport policy). In any event, I don't expect them to publish the motivated decision before the 21-day appeal period to the CAS expires. As I previously commented, at a minimum, Kasparov has grounds for appeal based upon the specific sanction(s) not being enumerated in the Code of Ethics (CoE) at the relevant time. But he might prefer simply to forget the whole thing.

As for the decision, I suspect that they interpreted the CoE clause 2.1 "influencing ... election into FIDE office" quite broadly, and decided that the Kasparov-Leong pay-for-campaign setup was not in line with this. As Sveshnikov notes, such schemes can be perfectly legitimate in other contexts, but then again FIDE can decide whatever it wants concerning its internal affairs. For instance, I think there were comments at various General Assemblies that money should be kept out of FIDE elections as much as possible (haha!) or at least the campaigning should be more limited. I do agree with Sveshnikov that (at least from what I know) Kasparov/Leong should not have been so harshly censured, regardless of what the sentiment among FIDE officers and delegates is concerning political money.

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