GENEVA — The world’s top chess federation has ruled that transgender women cannot compete in its official events for women until its officials make an assessment of gender change.
The decision by the Switzerland-based federation FIDE, published on Monday, has drawn criticism from advocacy groups and supporters of transgender rights.
FIDE said it and its member federations increasingly have received recognition requests from players who identify as transgender, and that the participation of transgender women would depend on an analysis of individual cases that could take up to two years.
“Change of gender is a change that has a significant impact on a player’s status and future eligibility to tournaments, therefore it can only be made if there is a relevant proof of the change provided,” the federation said.
“In the event that the gender was changed from a male to a female the player has no right to participate in official FIDE events for women until further FIDE’s decision is made,” it said.