Statement On Belarus
Victory square in Minsk, Belarus. Photo: Wikipedia/Creative Commons

Statement On Belarus

CHESScom
CHESScom
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About two weeks ago, Chess.com changed the flag of its members from Belarus. Members choosing the country Belarus in their profile were given the white-red-white flag instead of the red-and-green flag with a white-and-red ornament pattern.

The red-and-green flag is still the official flag in Belarus. It is an adaptation of a similar design approved in a 1995 referendum and derives from an older flag used when the country was a republic of the Soviet Union.

The white-red-white flag is older and dates to the time before Belarus was a Soviet state. It was also used in the years 1991-1995 and is now the preferred flag for the opposition and widely used in the protests.

Chess.com made this temporary choice out of solidarity with the people who oppose the non-democratically elected leadership.

While we received many positive messages from Belarussian members, the general feeling among them is that it's better to keep using the official flag. Therefore, we have now reverted to the red-and-green flag again.

Meanwhile, our main message still stands. We believe in a world where peace, freedom, and democracy are among the most important values, especially in times of political (Belarus) or military (Armenia/Azerbaijan) unrest in countries where chess has historically been thriving.

Stay safe, everyone.