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Iceland’s parliament voted to grant citizenship to former world chess champion Bobby Fischer, yesterday.

Fischer, who has been in a Japanese prison since July, is wanted by the US for violating UN sanctions when he played a chess match against former rival Boris Spassky in the former Yugoslavia in 1992, a match Fischer won.

Fischer, of course, beat Spassky for the world championship of chess in Reykjavik in 1972, in what was dubbed the match of the century.

Iceland’s parliament voted 40 to nothing in favour of granting Fischer citizenship. There were two abstentions, and 21 parliamentarians failed to show up.

Last month, Iceland’s parliament voted against granting Fischer citizenship, instead offering him a tourist passport and residence permit. However, Japan refused to release Fischer.

Japanese authorities are expected to release Fischer now that he is officially an Icelandic citizen.

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