Israeli team forced to compete anonymously in Dubai chess tournament

( Israeli children competing in the World Youth Chess Championships in Dubai are being forced to compete anonymously and not represent Israel in the international tournament.

Chess pieces. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

On the 2013 World Youth Chess Championships official website, Israelis aged 10-18 are identified under the generic country acronym FIDE, the Federation Internationale des Echecs, or World Chess Federation.

The Israeli children were allowed to compete only after Israeli Chess Federation head Moshe Shalev, supported by Deputy Foreign Minister Ze’ev Elkin, warned the Dubai organizers that the FIDE would cancel the tournament, the Times of Israel reported.

The United Arab Emirates, like most Arab countries, does not recognize Israel. In 2009, the country denied Israeli tennis player Shahar Pe’er a visa to compete in the Dubai Tennis Championships, garnering widespread condemnation.

Posted on December 27, 2013 .