The Baku Olympiad got underway yesterday amidst poor reviews in the international press, which rightly focused on the Orwellianpress controls as well as numerous cases of ABUSE OF AUTHORITY on the part of some arbiters who insisted on getting written requests from players when ever they needed to visit the toilette for basic needs.
Official protests were registerd by the Captains of both the English and Hungarian teams, and hundreds of players signed a petition to stop this outrage.
The first round was also delayed because of the (planned) visit by the president of Azerbaijan, whose fully armed security team would not allow any photos taken by anyone. Under threat of immediate arrest and expulsion from the country, no doubt.
The scandalous treatment of journalists is well documented by Peter Doggers at Chess.com: HERE.
The Norwegian journalist Svensen was quick to point out that Azerbaijan has one of the worse Freedom Of Pressrecords in the world, ranking 163-rd of 180 nations, just slightly ahead of Lybia and Saudia Arabia, two of the most repressive dictatorships in the world.
Azerbaijan also has one of the worse Human Rights records in the world, and in recent times has been singled out for increased repression of critics.
One must ask on the wiseness of the decision of FIDE to award such an important event to a country with such a poor record.
Apart from this, the particpants seem to be otherwise enjoying the tournament. So far. Conditions are considered more than adequate, by normal FIDE standards.