Women’s Tennis Association shelves all tournaments in China amid Peng considerations

The Women’s Tennis Association has suspended all tournaments in China amid considerations for the welfare of Chinese player, Peng Shuai. According to an AFP report, Steve Simon from the WTA says the tournaments, together with these deliberate for Hong Kong, cannot go ahead whereas Peng is unable to talk freely. The Winter Olympics are due to take place in Beijing in February.
“In good conscience, I don’t see how I can ask our athletes to compete there when Peng Shuai is not allowed to communicate freely and has seemingly been pressured to contradict her allegation of sexual assault.”

Peng disappeared for 2 weeks after alleging she was sexually abused for years by Zhang Gaoli, a former senior official within the governing Chinese Communist Party. The allegation, which appeared on social media, has now been deleted. Since then, Peng has re-appeared in public and has had a video call with Thomas Bach from the International Olympic Committee. However, Simon does not believe she was speaking freely on that call, during which she insisted she was protected and well and needed her privateness respected.
“While we now know the place Peng is, I really have critical doubts that she is free, secure, and never topic to censorship, coercion, and intimidation. None of that is acceptable nor can it turn out to be acceptable. If ติดตั้งโซล่าเซลล์Huawei can suppress the voices of ladies and sweep allegations of sexual assault under the rug, then the premise on which the WTA was founded – equality for girls – would endure an immense setback.”

Simon has welcomed the support of the European Union, the United Nations, the US, and the UK, all of whom have called on the Chinese government for more proof that Peng isn’t being censored or intimidated. Meanwhile, according to the AFP report, the International Tennis Federation says it understands why the WTA needed to take the stance it has.
“The WTA has stood agency and true to its values from the start and we perceive their choice. We will proceed to carefully monitor the situation.”

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