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Friday, 18 Jun 2021 07:38
Mongolian Chess Federation suspended for one year

From 16 June 2021, the FIDE membership of the Mongolian Chess Federation (MCF) is suspended for a period of one year pursuant to a decision of the FIDE Ethics & Disciplinary Commission (EDC) in EDC case no. 4/2018.

In view of this sanction, the FIDE Council has taken measures to protect the interests and rights of players, organizers, arbiters, trainers, clubs, etc. belonging to the Mongolian Chess Federation during the suspension period.

You can read the FIDE Council decision on how this suspension will be implemented at the following link.

This is the full text of the decision made by the FIDE Ethics & Disciplinary Commission: 

“From 16 June 2021, the FIDE membership of the Mongolian Chess Federation (MCF) is suspended for a period of one year pursuant to a decision of the FIDE Ethics & Disciplinary Commission (EDC) in EDC case no. 4/2018.

The EDC received a complaint by GM Efstratios Grivas of Greece against the MCF as long ago as June 2018.

The complaint related to the non-payment of certain monies due to GM Grivas in terms of a written agreement concluded with the MCF for the supply of chess training materials and assignment of rights to use the materials translated into the Mongolian language. The payment was due in four instalments between February and November 2018, but the MCF had already failed, at the date of the complaint, to make payment of the first two instalments.

After the EDC had declared the case as provisionally admissible, the MCF made payment in September 2018 of half of the contractual amount. Since then the balance of 50% has remained outstanding and GM Grivas asked the EDC to render a final decision.

The case is related to a contractual matter, with the EDC having to decide the boundaries between contract/business law and the disciplinary law enforced by the FIDE Code of Ethics. As a general rule, a breach of a contractual obligation is not per se a violation of the Code of Ethics and would normally be a case for the civil courts.

However, the EDC held in its final decision that it may have jurisdiction over a case if there is proof of a dishonourable failure or refusal to meet commercial obligations and the matter is closely enough connected to the sphere of chess governance. In particular:

  • The contract must be relating to chess and closely linked to one of the chess spheres governed by FIDE. Purely commercial contracts remain outside of EDC Jurisdiction;
  • Both parties must belong to the “FIDE Family”; and
  • There must be grounds for misbehaviour or misconduct that can be considered as a breach of the FIDE Code of Ethics.

Both parties to a chess contract must act in a loyal way and according to the principle of good faith fulfil their obligations.  If unforeseen difficulties intervene in the performance of a contract, the parties should approach each other and also negotiate in good faith to overcome them. The violation of these requirements could be considered as reprehensible behaviour and could constitute a violation of the FIDE Code of Ethics.

In the present case, despite the long period of two-and-a-half years since the full payment was due and the MCF’s apparent indifference by lack of response towards Mr. Grivas’ numerous reminders, half of the debt remains outstanding until today which the EDC found was a clear sign of a reluctance to pay and an unjustifiable attitude. The EDC held further that the MCF had failed to rebut the factual presumption that their non-payment of GM Grivas' monies was without good reason in the absence of any just explanation from their side.

The MCF was found guilty of a violation of articles 2.4 (Failure to comply with normally accepted standards of courtesy and chess etiquette; misbehaviour of a personal nature which is generally unacceptable by normal social standards) and 2.2.10 (occurrences which cause the game of chess, FIDE or its federations to appear in an unjustifiable unfavourable light and in this way damage its reputation) of the Code of Ethics.

The MCF was sanctioned with a temporary exclusion from membership as a FIDE national federation member, including any participation in FIDE meetings and events, for a period of 1 year. This sanction does not affect the rights of players, arbiters, trainers and clubs belonging to the MCF from participating fully in a sport activity.

The MCF was afforded a period of 3 months from the date of the EDC’s decision on 16 March 2021 for it to make full payment of the outstanding amount to Mr. Grivas, failing which the temporary exclusion from membership would take effect.

As the MCF has failed to make the outstanding payment within the given 3 month -period, the suspension has indeed taken effect on 16 June 2021.”

You can read the FIDE Council decision on how this suspension will be implemented at the following link.