Peng Shuai: ‘Unanimous conclusion’ that tennis star is ‘fine,’ says IOC member Dick Pound

The European Union on Tuesday mentioned it needs China to launch “verifiable proof” that Peng is protected and to conduct a radical and clear investigation into her sexual assault allegations towards former Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli.

One of China’s most recognizable sports activities stars, Peng publicly accused Zhang of coercing her into intercourse at his residence, based on screenshots of a since-deleted social media put up dated November 2.

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Following the accusation, Peng disappeared from public view, prompting a number of fellow tennis gamers to precise fear on social media, utilizing the hashtag #WhereIsPengShuai.

On November 21, the IOC mentioned in an announcement that its president, Thomas Bach, had a 30-minute video name with three-time Olympian Peng, joined by a Chinese sports activities official and an IOC official.

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The assertion mentioned that, in the course of the name, Peng gave the impression to be “doing fine” and was “relaxed,” saying she “would like to have her privacy respected.” The IOC didn’t clarify how the video name with Peng had been organized and has not made the video publicly obtainable.

The European Union has commented that Peng’s “recent public reappearance does not ease concerns about her safety and freedom.”

Former Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli pictured attending a panel discussion in Beijing in November 2012.

When requested on how he can ever ensure Peng Shuai’s appearances aren’t staged, Pound, who has not seen footage of the decision, advised CNN’s Erin Burnett: “There are lots of countries where you can’t easily leave the country. I think a lot of that is speculation.”

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Speaking of these on the decision, he mentioned: “What we have is hard evidence as we can have and feel. These are people who have dealt with athletes and dealt with pressure.

Peng Shuai: WTA remains 'deeply concerned' about Chinese tennis star

“They can inform whether or not any person is behaving beneath duress or not.

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“Their unanimous conclusion was that she was fine. And she just asked that her privacy be respected for the time being,” he mentioned.

Pound beforehand advised CNN’s Christiane Amanpour he was “puzzled” by the response to a video name between Peng and IOC President Bach.

He mentioned that the IOC’s evaluation of Shuai was “the best evidence we have at the moment.”

“I would rely on the combined judgment of colleagues,” Pound mentioned, including that it was “a conversation between four Olympians,” and that his colleagues would have observed if the dialog wasn’t “relaxed.”

Human Rights Watch China Director Sophie Richardson denounced the IOC’s function in collaborating with Chinese authorities on Peng’s reappearance, whereas the pinnacle of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), Steve Simon, mentioned the IOC’s intervention is inadequate to allay considerations about Peng’s security.

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Peng’s case has additionally raised tough diplomatic questions for China, which is able to host the 2022 Winter Olympics between February 4 and 20.

Late final month, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs mentioned that the federal government hoped “malicious speculation” concerning Peng’s well-being and whereabouts would cease, including that her case shouldn’t be politicized.

Chinese authorities haven’t acknowledged Peng’s allegations towards Zhang, and there is no indication an investigation is underway. It stays unclear if Peng has reported her allegations to the police.

Zhang has saved a low profile and pale from public life since his retirement in 2018, and there is no public data regarding his present whereabouts.

Before retiring as vice premier, Zhang was the pinnacle of a Chinese authorities working group for the Beijing Games. In the function, he inspected venues, visited athletes, unveiled official emblems and held conferences to coordinate preparation work.

Zhang beforehand met with IOC President Bach on at the very least one event, with the 2 being photographed collectively shaking arms within the Chinese capital in 2016.

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