Pakistan withdraws from Chess Olympiad due to Indian act

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday withdrawn from the 44th Chess Olympiad after hosts India attempted to politicise the event by passing the torch relay through the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).

The event is scheduled to be held in Chennai from July 28.

Pakistan strongly condemned the move and decided against participating in the event.

In a statement, Foreign Office Spokesperson Asim Iftikhar regretted that India chose to politicise this prestigious international sporting event by passing the torch relay of this event through the IIOJK on 21st July.

“This is in utter disregard of the globally acknowledged disputed status of the territory,” he said. “India has committed a travesty that the international community cannot accept under any circumstances. India must know that by such provocative and indefensible actions, it can neither seek nor claim international legitimacy for its unjustifiable, illegal and tyrannical occupation of IIOJK continuing for over 7 decades.”

“Pakistan condemns India’s mischievous attempt to mix politics with sports. As a protest, Pakistan has decided not to participate in the 44th Chess Olympiad.”

“Pakistan will raise the matter with the International Chess Federation at the highest level,” he concluded.

Pakistan was invited by the International Chess Federation (FIDE) to participate in the Chess Olympiad. A contingent was already training for this event in this regard.