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11 Israelis to compete in Saudi Arabia?

The total Prize Fund for the event is $2,000,000!

(AhlulBayt News Agency) - After the Saudi news website, Elaph, interviewed the Israeli Chief of Military Staff Gadi Eisenkott few days ago, KSA authorities decided to continue normalizing ties with the Zionist entity as Riyadh would host an international chess tournament in which Israeli players participate.

Eleven Israelis have applied for visas to the kingdom in order to participate in the World Chess Federation’s international speed championship. The King Salman World Rapid and Blitz Chess Championships are to be held in Riyadh in December, and top Israeli chess players who are members of the Federation and are eligible to participate are applying.

As host of the international event, Saudi Arabia is obligated to grant visas to all eligible players – or face the prospect of losing the event, an eventuality that the Federation has reportedly told the Saudis would come about if they denied anyone visas.

FIDE Announcement:

FIDE is pleased to announce that we have reached an agreement with the Organisers that the dress code for the event will be dark blue or black formal suits, with white shirts, either open necked or with a tie, for men and dark blue or black formal trouser suits, with high necked white blouses for women. There will be no need to wear a hijab or abaya during the games, this will be a first for any sporting event in Saudi Arabia.

The total Prize Fund for the event is $2,000,000, with individual prize funds of $750,000 for the Open and $250,000 for the women in both events. This is almost 350% more than the previous event. There will be 30 prizes for each event, with the first prize being $250,000 in the Open Section and $80,000 in the Women’s Section, all new records.

With regards to visas, FIDE has raised with the Organisers that there may be problems for players from certain countries. FIDE has not been advised that any player will not be able to participate. FIDE is continuing to work with the Organisers to ensure that visas will be issued to all players who have confirmed their participation.

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