Kontroverse ACP/Ponomariov - FIDE

11.04.2004 – In einem offenen Brief an seine Kollegen der ACP hat sich Ruslan Ponomariov gemeldet, seine Auffassung zur Absage seines Wettkampfes gegen Garry Kasparov geäußert und sich über die Rolle der FIDE dabei beklagt. In einer Antwort hat der ACP-Vorstand  sich solidarisch erklärt. Außerdem wurden die ACP-Mitglieder aufgefordert, die Einverständniserklärung mit den Regularien zur kommenden FIDE-WM vorerst nicht zu unterzeichnen. ACP... FIDE...Mehr...

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Zwischen der ACP (Association of Chess Professionals) und der FIDE entwickelt sich zur Zeit eine Kontroverse in Bezug auf die Regularien der kommenden FIDE-Weltmeisterschaft und dem anschließend von der FIDE geplanten Wettkampf zwischen dem Sieger der K.O.-WM und Garry Kasparov. In einem offenen Brief hat sich der amtierende FIDE-Weltmeister Ruslan Ponomariov dagegen gewehrt, von der FIDE als derjenige dargestellt zu werden, der das Match gegen Kasparov hat platzen lassen. Zudem beklagt er sich, dass die FIDE sich nicht neutral verhalte, sondern die Interessen von Kasparov vertrete. In seiner Antwort hat der ACP-Vorstand seine Solidarität erklärt und Befremden darüber ausgedrückt, dass der Sieger der kommenden K.O.-WM verpflichtet sei, mit Kasparov, der nicht Titelverteiger ist, einen Wettkampf um den Titel zu spielen. Außerdem wurden die ACP-Mitglieder aufgefordert, eine Einverständniserklärung mit den Regularien der kommenden FIDE-Weltmeisterschaft (18.Juni bis 13.Juli 2004) vorerst nicht zu unterschreiben, da dort nur Pflichten der Spieler, aber keine solchen der FIDE formuliert werden. Zudem sei die Aufteilung in zwei WM-Gruppen, eine in Libyen, eine in Malta gleich bedeutend mit einer Aufteilung in Teilnehmer erster und zweiter Klasse.

 

Offener Brief von Ruslan Ponomariov an die ACP

To the Members of the ACP

Dear Colleagues,

I would like to inform you about my views on the most important issues of chess life.

The latest FIDE decisions regarding the World Championship granted exclusive privileges to GM Garry Kasparov. This is unprecedented, not only in chess history, but probably in the complete Olympic history as well. Mr. Kasparov bestowed on himself the title “Strongest chess player of the world”, even though there isn’t any mention of such a title in FIDE Statutes or in any other official papers. I view this situation as contrary to all the rules of fair play.

FIDE is constantly trying to put the blame on me for canceling the Ponomariov – Kasparov match. I hereby want to officially state that neither I nor the Organizing Committee of the match had any authority to cancel it. The match was unilaterally cancelled by the FIDE president, Mr. Ilyumzhinov. Unfortunately, starting with the General Assembly in Bled, the FIDE board exclusively defended the interests of Mr. Kasparov, although, as an international organization, it should have been taking a neutral position, and should have guaranteed that the conditions are fair and equal for all participants.

It concerns me greatly that the players’ opinions are getting less and less consideration, and that the players are becoming mainly just a source of income for all kinds of officials who sponge on chess. The prize fund for the World championship is reduced by half, choosing Libya as a venue will result in dividing the participants into first-rate and second-rate groups. If we stand by and do nothing, the chances are it will keep getting worse.

I am not trying to hold on to my title whatever it takes, but I can’t put up with the absolute dictatorship of FIDE. I am ready to defend my title on the conditions that were clearly set at the time I won it. I ask you, my colleagues, for understanding. I hope that the Association of Chess Professionals will be able to change this complicated situation.

Sincerely yours,

Ruslan Ponomariov, World Champion.

 

Antwort des ACP-Vorstandes

ACP Board reply to Ponomariov and Statement on FIDE Contract

To Ruslan Ponomariov, FIDE World Champion 11.04.2004

Dear Mr Ponomariov,

We thank you for addressing the ACP on the most important issue of the forthcoming 2004 FIDE World Championship.

It does strike us as illogical that the official FIDE World Champion should take part in a large knock-out event that will produce a winner, when the latter is then obliged to play a title match with a seeded player who is not a title holder. Considering that the seeded player was your official challenger for the same title several months before, the current format imposed by FIDE is devoid of any sense from the sporting point of view.

Therefore, we fully understand your position on this matter and inform you that it is shared by other leading players.

If you consider that your rights are being infringed from a legal standpoint by FIDE, you may send us all relevant documents and we shall contact the lawyer of the ACP on your behalf, in order to investigate this case.

With best regards,

The ACP Board
11.04.2004

 

 

Aufruf an die ACP-Mitglieder

ACP on Player's Undertaking

Dear chess colleagues,

It has officially been announced that the next 2004 FIDE World Chess Championship will be held from the 18th of June until the 13th of July, 2004, in Tripoli (Libya) and Valetta (Malta). Qualified players have been asked by the FIDE Secretariat to sign a copy of the “Player’s Undertaking”, before the 21st of April 2004, as presented on the FIDE website.

This document does not constitute a proper contract between the participants and FIDE, for the simple reason that it only describes the player’s obligations towards FIDE, whereas no mention is made of FIDE’s obligations toward the players. Moreover, the undertaking is to be signed only by the participant and bears no signature from any FIDE representative, thus relieving FIDE of any legal responsibility. This means that should a dispute arise, FIDE will have a signed commitment from the participant to produce in court, while the latter is left empty-handed.

Among several contentious points, we would like to draw your attention to the obligation for the players to stay in the official hotels, either in Libya or in Malta. Although highly unpopular, this compulsory measure is once more imposed on the participants, and this time without any mention of the expected prices for accommodation.

We have also noted some rather questionable clauses in the contract, such as the obligation for the winner in Tripoli (or Malta!) to play a match with Garry Kasparov within the abnormally long period of two years, when there is no evidence that FIDE has a signed agreement with the latter on this matter. The necessity to further follow the Prague Agreement is also out of place, since to our knowledge it is no longer valid.

And last, but not least, there is no clause indicating whether the participants will be compensated by FIDE, should the event in Libya and Malta be cancelled at the last minute. Similarly, nothing is foreseen in the case that payment to the players is delayed by several months, as has repeatedly been the case in previous editions of the FIDE World Championship.

The ACP Board considers that, in view of FIDE’s recent cancellation of the Kasparov-Ponomariov match and the 2002 FIDE Rapid Grand Prix, the participants need real guarantees from FIDE in regard to the upcoming World Championship, which in fact is but a standard procedure in all professional sports. The current “Player’s Undertaking” offers no such guarantee.

The ACP Board asks its members who are qualified for the 2004 FIDE World Championship to not hurry in signing the “Player’s Undertaking”. In a few days, we shall submit to FIDE a model of contract that we would like to see used for the 2004 FIDE World Championship.

With best regards,

The ACP Board
8.04.2004
 

 

 

 


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