Only a few days after the announcement of the annual Mind Clash tournament, current Champion Joelyn Donalokos has received death threats warning against his participation. This latest development has put further doubt around the tournament, and has fuelled previously rising tensions between the two empires. In the face of the threats, Donalokos has remained defiant, stating he will not be intimidated and will continue his preparations.
Major networks were quick to pick up the threat, which was leaked to the underground news outlets at the same time it was delivered to Joelyn. In the note it was claimed “the Blue Tiger will become a mascot for dead Gallente traitors.” At this time, the origins of the note or the group behind it remain unknown. The warning followed the official announcement that this years Mind Clash tournament would be held on Caldari Prime, a move that has sparked controversy beyond the realm of just the entertainment business.
On a broader political scale, Gallente-Caldari tensions have been renewed, as the Federation Nationalists continue to exert pressure to have the venue changed, citing concerns for security and what Roden Spokesperson Orvecel Raouli called “a lack of respect.” Responses from the State corporations remain varied, in what many are claiming is a strategic move to stall and deflate the Federation Nationals on the issue.
Only hours ago, Roden continued to apply its influence and called for a temporary closure of over half their offices in the Sinq Laison region, citing Article 237 of CONCORD’s Iyen-Oursta Treaty, allowing Federation offices located in the Border Zone to restrict Caldari access without stated reason for a maximum time of no longer than an hour. The unprecedented use of the Article as a political tool has raised a more concerned and unified stance from the State, although still at an unofficial level. Most agree that the lost trade revenue from the office closures is a trifle compared to any postponement or cancellation of the tournament.
Donalokos himself was adamant in the continuation of the tournament stating, “This shouldn’t be about politics, this should be about the game and people want the game to go on.” Whilst his management team stated they took all threats very seriously, Donalokos himself seemed untroubled by recent events, commenting that his mind was “already focused on the matches ahead.” Some have commented that the current Champion is already under a lot of pressure to attend, with the financial success of the tournament riding on the attention his presence brings.
Mind Clash officials have stated that they will increase personal security for the Champion, as well as at the venue overall. In an effort to appease growing concerns on both sides, vast sums of ISK have already been sunk into public security contracts that will help ensure the peace on match day. Satirists and comedians have already commented on the situation, saying that the Mind Clash has already begun in the political realm, with each side already using its own unique chimeras in the battle of ISK over ideals.