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Former world chess champion Bobby Fischer has appealed Japanese plans to deport him to the United States and hopes to find political asylum in a third country, friends said Wednesday.

Fischer was detained by Japanese immigration officials last week after trying to leave the country for the Philippines. Officials say that his passport was invalid and on Tuesday confirmed that he was being processed for deportation.

After visiting Fischer in custody at Tokyo's Narita Airport, Miyoko Watai of the Japan Chess Association said Fischer was appealing the deportation and would seek political asylum in a third country.

Fischer is wanted in the United States for playing a rematch against Soviet world champion Boris Spassky in Yugoslavia in 1992 when Yugoslavia was under international sanctions and U.S. citizens were banned from doing business there.

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