Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai has gone missing. She reportedly released a message that she was sexually abused by a Chinese official and then she was gone.
Peng Shuai is a world-class tennis star according to CNN:
Peng is a two-time Grand Slam doubles champion and one of China’s top tennis players.
From Hunan, in central China, the 35-year-old made history in 2014 when she became the first Chinese player — male or female — to achieve the world No.1 doubles ranking.
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Her two major doubles titles were won at Wimbledon in 2013 and the French Open in 2014. Peng also reached the singles semifinals at the 2014 US Open, and is a three-time Olympian. She’s won 25 tour titles and obtained a No. 17 world singles rank.
The international success of Peng and fellow Chinese tennis stars Li Na and Zheng Jie, has been credited with helping the sport’s popularity soar in China, particularly for the women’s game.
On November 2, Peng accused former Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli of coercing her into sex. Peng revealed the alleged incident in a post on the Chinese social media network Weibo.
Within 30 minutes of publication, Peng’s post was deleted and Chinese censors immediately worked to remove all mentions of the accusation online. The popular tennis star’s Weibo account – which has over 500,000 followers — was also blocked from searchers.
She hasn’t been seen since.
But then a few days ago a message was released reportedly from Peng to Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Chairman Steve Simon:
Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai has sent an email to Steve Simon, the WTA Chairman & CEO, CGTN has learned. The email reads: pic.twitter.com/uLi6Zd2jDI
— CGTN (@CGTNOfficial) November 17, 2021
The validity of this message is being questioned.
According to CNN, Simon questioned the email’s authenticity, describing it as a “staged statement of some type.” He said he has not received a reply despite immediately responding.
“Whether she was coerced into writing it, someone wrote it for her, we don’t know,” Simon said. “But at this point I don’t think there’s any validity in it and we won’t be comfortable until we have a chance to speak with her.”
It’s now nearly three weeks since Peng has been seen.
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