‘Enormous Misunderstanding.’ Chinese Tennis Player Peng Shuai Says She Never Accused Official of Sexual Assault

(BEIJING) — Chinese language tennis participant Peng Shuai has informed a French newspaper that worldwide concern over her well-being is predicated on “an infinite misunderstanding” and he or she denied having accused a high-ranking Chinese language official of sexual assault.

The interview with L’Equipe was held below managed situations in Beijing and did not reply some key questions on Peng’s preliminary accusations of sexual assault and whether or not she has since been in hassle with China’s authoritarian authorities.

L’Equipe, which focuses on sports activities information, printed the interview Monday. The publication stated it spoke to the tennis participant a day earlier in a Beijing resort in an hour-long interview organized by means of China’s Olympic committee.
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Additionally Monday, the Worldwide Olympic Committee launched a press release saying IOC President Thomas Bach had dinner with Peng on Saturday. That was the day after China’s president opened the Winter Olympics in Beijing which were overshadowed by worldwide considerations about Chinese language human rights abuses and Peng’s scenario. The IOC stated Peng additionally attended the China-Norway Olympic curling match with IOC member Kirsty Coventry of Zimbabwe.

L’Equipe stated it needed to submit questions prematurely and {that a} Chinese language Olympic committee official sat in on the dialogue and translated Peng’s feedback from Chinese language.

The newspaper printed her feedback verbatim – which it stated was one other pre-condition for interview – in question-and-answer type. Pictures of Peng throughout the interview confirmed her carrying a purple track-suit prime with “China” in Chinese language characters on the entrance.

L’Equipe requested Peng a couple of publish that appeared briefly in November on her verified account on a number one Chinese language social media platform, Weibo, which kicked off a storm of worldwide concern about her.

In that publish, Peng wrote that Zhang Gaoli, a former vice premier and member of the ruling Chinese language Communist Get together’s omnipotent Politburo Standing Committee, had compelled her to have intercourse regardless of repeated refusals. Her publish additionally stated that they had intercourse as soon as seven years in the past and he or she had emotions for him after that.

Peng briefly disappeared from public view after the publish, then appeared at some promotional appearances organized by the federal government. The interview with L’Equipe was her first sit-down dialogue with non-Chinese language media because the accusation.

Chatting with L’Equipe, Peng denied having accused Zhang of assault.

“Sexual assault? I by no means stated that anybody made me undergo a sexual assault,” the newspaper quoted her as saying.

“This publish resulted in an infinite misunderstanding from the skin world,” she additionally stated. “My want is that the that means of this publish now not be skewed.”

The prolonged publish rapidly disappeared from Peng’s account. Requested why by L’Equipe, she stated: “I erased it.”

“Why? As a result of I needed to,” she added.

Within the interview, Peng didn’t reply on to a query about whether or not she has been in hassle with Chinese language authorities because the publish. As a substitute, she responded with a pat-sounding reply that echoed views usually expressed by the Chinese language authorities about sport and politics.

“I used to be to say initially that feelings, sport and politics are three clearly separate issues,” the newspaper quoted her as saying. “My romantic issues, my non-public life, shouldn’t be combined with sport and politics.”

Requested what her life has been like because the November posting, she replied: “It’s accurately: Nothing particular.”


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