Sun, 14 Aug 2022

Beijing [China], November 18 (ANI): Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai's email to the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) regarding allegations of sexual assault has raised concern over her safety and security.

The message, written in English, says the WTA's news release, including the allegation of sexual assault, "is not true." It also says that "I'm not missing, nor am I unsafe. I've just been resting at home and everything is fine", reported NHK World.

The email was released by a Chinese state-run media outlet that claimed was written by Peng.

WTA Chairman and CEO Steve Simon released a statement in response.

Simon said that the email released by the Chinese state media "only raises my concerns as to her safety and whereabouts", reported NHK World.

He further said that it is hard to believe that Peng actually wrote the email, adding, "The WTA and the rest of the world need independent and verifiable proof that she is safe."He also added, "Her allegation of sexual assault must be respected, investigated with full transparency and without censorship."Peng has not been seen in public since reportedly claiming in a social media post that former Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli sexually abused her, and they later had an extramarital relationship, reported NHK World.

The WTA previously called for an investigation into the allegations. The email post has triggered a wave of social media comments doubting its credibility.

Peng has won many doubles titles, including at Wimbledon in 2013. Zhang was a member of the Chinese Communist Party's Politburo Standing Committee until 2017. (ANI)

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