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Tbilisi, Batumi at Odds over Chess Championship

The President of Georgian Chess Federation Zurab Azmaiparashvili said Women’s World Chess Championship, scheduled for May 21-June 8, will the held in Adjarian capital Batumi, despite the opposition from Georgia’s central government.

Georgian Minister for Sport and Culture Goka Gabashvili said on April 16 that the tournament should not be held as because of presence of illegal armed groups in the Autonomous Republic “Georgian authorities can not ensure security of the participants [of thechampionship].”

“Statements of the central authorities are absolutely groundless. We are ready to hold the tournament in Batumi,” Giorgi Abashidze, Mayor of Batumi and son of Adjarian leader Aslan Abashidze, said at a news briefing on April 17.

The President of Georgian Chess Federation Zurab Azmaiparashvili agrees there is no threat the participants of tournament in the Autonomous Republic. “Championship will be held in Adjara,” Azmaiparashvili told Imedi television on April 16.
On April 15 Adjarian leader Aslan Abashidze met with President of the World Chess Federation Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, who is also the President of Russia’s Autonomous Republic of Kalmykia, in Batumi and signed an agreement regarding the organization of the tournament.


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