The World Chess Federation (FIDE) is in financial crisis because of the continuing presence of its President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov on the blacklist of the United States Treasury Department.
FIDE Treasurer Adrian Siegel has written to members to inform them of the "serious problem" now facing the organisation following the announcement that their Swiss Bank, UBS, will immediately close their accounts after Ilyumzhinov’s failure to remove himself from the list over a period of more than two years.
"In summary, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov’s problems severely damage FIDE’s business activities and we have to look for a new bank connection," Siegel concluded.
"In the process of this change we anticipate some problems.
"However, we will do our best that payments will not be delayed."
The 55-year-old Ilyumzhinov, President of the Republic of Kalmykia in the Russian Federation from 1993 to 2010, was placed on the US sanction list on November 25 in 2015 after being accused of facilitating transactions on behalf of the Syrian Government.
Siegel’s letter continued: "Since then Kirsan Ilyumzhinov has unsuccessfully tried several times to be removed from this list and at the moment there is no hint at all that there will be a change.
"In order to protect FIDE from the President’s problem we gave him the time and the space to solver his issues."
On December 6, in 2015 the Presidential Board unanimously took the decision that Ilyumzhinov should withdraw from "any legal, financial and business operations of FIDE", transferring this power to the Deputy President Georgios Makropoulos.
Siegel added: "Subsequently, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov informed FIDE at various occasions that he will be removed from the sanction list in the very near future.
"This information was given to our Swiss bank UBS and, hereby, we could keep our accounts.
"Now, however, after more than two years of Kirsan Ilyumzhinov’s presence on the sanction list…the Swiss bank UBS has announced that they will immediately close our accounts.
"The white money strategy in Switzerland does not allow to do business with institutions or persons on the sanction list of the US Department of the Treasury.
"Thus, it was only a question of time until we face this serious problem."
Last April, FIDE held an Extraordinary Presidential Board meeting in Athens after the governing body's website reported that President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov had resigned, a claim he denied.
In October the Executive Board of FIDE - whose motto of "gens una sumus" translates as "we are one people" - voted to keep Makropoulos at the head of the organisation.
According to the FIDE website, the Greek Deputy President claimed he felt "the Presidential Board and Executive team of FIDE had been defamed, threatened and insulted by an election campaign that Ilyumzhinov had initiated".
During the meeting, Siegel proposed a motion that requested Ilyumzhinov not run in the next Presidential election.
The members voted 37-20 in favour of the motion with two abstentions.
The decision is not final and Ilyumzhinov can still decide whether to stand or not.