Based on the report made by the chief arbiter of the Olympiad, Ignatius Leong, among other factors, the proposal of the committee was accepted by the RTRC [Rules and Tournament Regulations Committee]. In the meeting of the Executive Board, there was some opposition to the 0 minutes rule. There were several suggestions regarding 15 or 30 minutes, but there was no final proposal. In the General Assembly the discussion started again, and I explained that in effect nothing had been changed, but then the FIDE President proposed something different: Any player who arrives at the chessboard after the start of the session shall lose the game.
As you can see, the FIDE President does not like to make any exception. Each tournament committee has to accept the 0 minutes rule and the arbiter has no possibility to accept an excuse for the late arrival of a player, even in case of a clear “force majeure.”
So basically, the "force majeure" excuse is good enough for Kirsan, but not for anyone else. As I noted in my Olympiad round 11 live blog last month, "force majeure" was Kirsan's favourite phrase during his press conference. I think he must have uttered it no less than half a dozen times!
Why was the Qatar GP moved? Force majeure! Why all the changes in world championships...etc...etc? Force majeure! Why did you withdraw your personal guarantee of $750K? Force majeure!