ADL Urges Chess Federation To Give Israeli Players Fair Treatment
New York, NY, May 17, 2004…The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) called on the World Chess Federation to ensure equal treatment for the Israeli delegation to the 2004 World Chess Championship in Libya.
Although Libya has said that Israel will be permitted to participate in the Championship, restrictions placed on the Israeli delegation by the Libyans will make it virtually impossible for them to compete. Israelis who are planning to compete in the Championship are not permitted to bring their coaches or spouses or receive visas in Europe. Israeli media is currently barred from covering the Championship, and there are concerns over security arrangements for the Israeli participants.
"It is troubling that a country, such as Libya, is given an opportunity to host an international competition when it discriminates against participants from nations that are members of the World Chess Federation," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "It is particularly ironic that this discrimination is taking place at a time when Libya is trying to regain some measure of international legitimacy."
In a letter to Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, President of the World Chess Federation, Mr. Foxman strongly urged "the World Chess Federation to do all it can to ensure that Libya welcomes the Israeli players in the manner in which every other nationality participating in the championship is treated or consider alternate venues."
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.