by Hovhannes Kazaryan
It is not accidentally that such small country as Armenia has become the World's Chess Champion for three times, said Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, Head of FIDE, at the opening of the European 15th Individual Chess Championship to be held on March 2-15 in Yerevan. The Championship is dedicated to the memory of the World 9th Champion Tigran Petrosyan.
He said that another big achievement is that Levon Aronian was ranked number two on the FIDE rating list. "It is important that chess is considered as a national game in Armenia. It is not accidental that Armenia is the first country in the world to include chess in the school program. All this together contributes to Armenia's successes in the chess championships," he said.
263 chess players of 27 countries, including 130 grandmasters, will participate in the European 15th Individual Chess Championship in Yerevan. The winner will receive 160,000 euro.