Russia’s chess player Sergei Karjakin has been banned from playing for six months by the World Executive Council on Monday for publicly supporting his country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Karjagen, who competed with Norway’s world champion Magnus Carlsen in 2016, has been found by the federation’s ethics committee to have tarnished the game with his comments on social media.
The 32-year-old announced his open support for Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The federation said it had “generated significant reactions on social media and elsewhere regarding the ongoing military conflict in Ukraine,” most of which reject Karachi’s comments.
In its ruling, the union pointed out that Karyakin had released a message in support of Russia’s intervention, saying he hoped it would achieve “disarming and uprooting Nazism from Ukraine”, echoing Moscow’s position.
He added that the player also tweeted pictures of himself claiming to be Ukrainian soldiers holding a picture of Adolf Hitler: “This is Ukraine.”
Karayagan is currently ranked 18th in the world. With this ban, he will not be able to participate as one of the eight players in the Madrid Championship for candidates vying for the right to challenge for the Carlson title.
For his part, he denounced what Karaik had said was a “shameful” verdict by his account in the “Telegram”, insisting: “I do not regret anything” because he was first a citizen and then a soldier.
The Russian Chess Federation has already announced that it will appeal the verdict.
Last Wednesday, the International Chess Federation suspended the chess matches of the Russian and Belarusian teams, while allowing individual players from both countries to continue to compete.
A verdict on Monday acquitted another Russian player, Sergei Shebov, of similar allegations, whose comments were less provocative than Karyakin’s, and he was not widely known, so the audience was low.
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