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World Chess Statement on Transgender Rights and Inclusivity in Chess

At World Chess, we believe in the power of chess to unite people across diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and identities. The recent policy introduced by FIDE concerning transgender players has sparked important conversations within the chess community, and we feel compelled to share our stance on this critical issue.

We stand in support of transgender rights and the inclusion of transgender individuals in the sport of chess. Chess, at its core, is a battle of wits, strategy, and endurance, transcending physical barriers. We think that it is obvious that everyone, regardless of gender identity, deserves the opportunity to compete, grow, and excel in this intellectual sport.

The decision to restrict transgender women from participating in female-only events, pending a lengthy analysis, raises profound concerns about inclusivity and fairness. We acknowledge the complexity of ensuring competitive fairness across all categories of play but emphasize the importance of approaching this challenge with empathy, inclusivity, and respect for individual rights.

We are disheartened by the implications of FIDE’s policy for transgender players, potentially placing them in a position where they must choose between their identity and their passion for chess. This not only contradicts the spirit of inclusivity but also overlooks the mental and emotional well-being of individuals affected by these regulations.

In light of these developments, World Chess commits to:

— Advocating for policies that promote inclusivity and respect for all players, including transgender individuals, in chess tournaments and events worldwide.
— Engaging with transgender players, experts, and advocacy groups to ensure that their voices and needs are considered in the development of policies affecting their participation in chess.
— Supporting initiatives and research aimed at understanding the impact of gender identity on competitive fairness in chess, with the goal of establishing guidelines that are both inclusive and equitable.

Chess has the unique ability to bring people together, challenging us to think deeply not only about the game in front of us but also about the world around us.

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