Furor Over Peng Shuai’s #Metoo Accusation Challenges China

by WDC News 6 Staff

Ms. Peng’s case is the primary #MeToo accusation leveled towards somebody throughout the highest ranks of energy in China, the Politburo Standing Committee. It has highlighted the nation’s swaggering confidence in its potential to suppress all criticism, together with from ladies who’ve come ahead with accusations of misconduct.

“She is unquestionably not the primary one to be pressured into silence and disappeared,” Lü Pin, an activist who based the now-banned Chinese language on-line discussion board Feminist Voices, wrote in a message from New Jersey, the place she now lives. “This sort of encounter is completely not unusual in China now. The authorities have an excessive amount of energy and nobody can maintain them accountable.”

What has elevated Ms. Peng’s case is her superstar at dwelling. As she skyrocketed via the ranks {of professional} tennis, she was as soon as held up by the Chinese language authorities as a mannequin athlete. “She is sort of a breeze in ladies’s tennis,” the Individuals’s Every day, the primary newspaper of the Chinese language Communist Social gathering, wrote in 2013. “She’ll at all times be our Chinese language princess.”

That was shortly after she and her doubles accomplice, Hsieh Su-wei of Taiwan, received the championship at Wimbledon. They received once more on the French Open in 2014, the 12 months she reached the semifinals of the U.S. Open as a singles participant and was lauded by officers as a “golden flower” of Chinese language sports activities.

On Nov. 2, her accusation grew to become a thorn within the authorities’s facet.

In a protracted, at instances disjointed submit printed on her verified social media account that evening, Ms. Peng described an on-and-off relationship with Mr. Zhang, a former provincial governor who served as one among seven members of the Politburo Standing Committee between 2012 and 2017. When he stepped down, her submit stated, they reunited and he assaulted her after inviting her to play tennis with him and his spouse.

Ms. Peng, 35, described feeling powerless in making accusations towards such a politically highly effective man. Within the account, which has not been corroborated, Ms. Peng acknowledged that she couldn’t present proof.

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