On July 28-31, the FIDE President had a working visit to Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea). The main goal of his visit to Pyongyang was the reaching of the agreement on establishing the National Chess Federation. In the capital of North Korea in Mansudae Assembly Hall, the FIDE President met with Yang Hyong-sop, Vice President of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly. Also President Ilyumzhinov met with Son Kwang Ho, Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, and Pyon Sung Chol, the General Secretary of Korean Chess Association. The FIDE delegation visited the “must-see by the foreigners” village – Mangyongdae-guyok. One can find here the memorial house museum of Kim Il-sung, the Juche Tower and the main memorial complex of the country – Kumsusan Palace of the Sun – that serves as the mausoleum for Kim Il-sung and for Kim Jong-il.
At the meeting with Vice President of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly, the FIDE President spoke about the history and the main aspects of FIDE’s activity, in particular, the most significant projects and shared his views on bilateral cooperation including the material and technical support, which FIDE can provide for the successful functioning of the national chess federation.
The results of the dialogue were the worlds of Yang Hyong-sop “chess is a very good mind sport” and “the North Korea doesn’t mind joining FIDE”.

IMG 6723 IMG 6729
Visiting the Mangyongdae-guyok and the house of Kim Il-sung

IMG 6732 IMG 6733
Interview to the Korean Central News Agency – KCNA

IMG 6742 IMG 6750
Visiting the Juche Tower, named after the ideology of Juche

IMG 6754 IMG 6755

The negotiations with the Deputy Minister of Sports Son Kwang Ho, who is also the Vice President and General Secretary of the DPRK NOC. The negotiations were not easy, but eventually the FIDE was able to reach a positive result. A delegation from the DPRK will apply for FIDE membership and will come for the FIDE Congress in Abu Dhabi in September.

IMG 6771 IMG 6774
The souvenir chess set for the leader of Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

IMG 6776 IMG 6778
The souvenir was accepted by Yang Hyong-sop

IMG 6786 IMG 6790
Meeting with Yang Hyong-sop, Vice President of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly

IMG 6794 IMG 6796
The souvenir chess set from the FIDE President, the shape of chess pieces attracted the officials’ interest

IMG 6856 IMG 6859

The meeting with Pyon Sung Chol, General Secretary of Korean chess Association, who said that there are 30, 000 registered chess players in the country, but 80% of North Korean men can play chess. The association was established in 1987, there are departments in all 12 DPRK districts.

IMG 6822 IMG 6836
The monument to the Korean leaders. It wasn’t easy to take a picture of the pioneer girls together with the foreigner.

Source: World Chess Federation – FIDE