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China tennis star Peng denies that she made accusation of sexual assault By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Tennis – China Open Women’s Singles Second Round – Beijing, China – 05/10/16. China’s Peng Shuai reacts to a problem name as she performs towards France’s Caroline Garcia. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

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BEIJING (Reuters) – Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai mentioned on Sunday that she had by no means accused anybody of sexually assaulting her, and that a social media put up she had made early final month had been misunderstood.

Peng’s well-being turned a matter of concern among the many world tennis group and rights teams when she appeared to allege that a former Chinese vice premier, Zhang Gaoli, had sexually assaulted her up to now. After that put up, she was absent from public view for practically three weeks.

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“First, I must stress one level that is extraordinarily necessary, I’ve by no means mentioned or written that anybody has sexually assaulted me, I’ve to obviously stress this level,” Peng mentioned within the video posted by Lianhe Zaobao, a Singapore media outlet.

Peng’s remarks on Sunday marked the primary time she had addressed the matter on digicam in public. She spoke on the sidelines of a cross-country snowboarding occasion in Shanghai that she attended.

She mentioned that her put up on Weibo (NASDAQ:), a Twitter-like social media web site, which had been rapidly eliminated, was a “personal matter”.

Peng, 35, mentioned within the video that “individuals have many misunderstandings” about her Weibo put up. She didn’t elaborate.

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She additionally mentioned that she had been dwelling at house in Beijing with out supervision. She didn’t point out Zhang.

Reuters has been unable to succeed in Peng since her Weibo put up.

Early this month, the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), which has sought a direct line of communication with Peng, mentioned it might droop tournaments https://www.reuters.com/way of life/science/wta-suspends-tournaments-china-over-peng-shuai-situation-2021-12-01 in China instantly as a consequence of issues over the therapy of Peng and the security of different gamers.

The WTA didn’t instantly reply to a request for touch upon Sunday.

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China has indirectly commented on Peng’s preliminary put up, however mentioned after the WTA’s transfer to droop tournaments in China that it “opposes the politicization of sports activities”.

Zhang has not commented on the matter.

Discussion of the scandal, which emerged as Beijing prepares to stage the Winter Olympics in February, has been closely censored in China.

Peng mentioned within the video posted on Sunday that she had personally written a letter final month to WTA head Steve Simon, through which she denied the allegation of assault, and that an English translation of it by Chinese state media was correct.

Simon had mentioned on the time that he “had a tough time believing” that Peng had really written the e-mail or believed what had been attributed to her.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has held two video calls with the 35-year-old Peng.

At the Shanghai occasion on Sunday, Peng appeared on a fifth ground viewing balcony with athletes from numerous sports activities, together with former NBA basketball star Yao Ming, and watched for about 20 minutes, in accordance with the Lianhe Zaobao report.

She wore a black jacket with a China flag and a crimson T-shirt with the characters for China.

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