Japan’s Osaka sympathizes with disappeared Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai

Tokyo, Nov 17 (EFE).- Japanese tennis player Naomi Osaka expressed Wednesday her solidarity with Chinese counterpart Peng Shuai, who denounced having been sexually assaulted by a former deputy prime minister of her country in early November and has since disappeared.

“I recently found out about a fellow tennis player who has disappeared shortly after revealing that she had suffered sexual abuse,” Osaka said in a message posted through her official social media profile.

“Censorship is never right under any circumstances, I hope Peng Shuai and her family are safe and sound,” said the Japanese tennis player, who is ranked 13th in the Women’s Tennis Association world rankings.

“I am shocked by the situation,” said the Japanese star, who said she sent Peng “love and light” and published the hashtag “#Whereispengshuai,” used to report the athlete’s case on social media.

Osaka joined other voices from the tennis world who have drawn attention to the case of Peng, one of the best-known sports figures in China, who accused her country’s former Deputy Prime Minister Zhang Gaoli of sexual abuse.

Peng posted her complaint on her Weibo social media account earlier this month, but the message disappeared a few hours later.

The 35-year-old player, world No. 189, said she was raped by Zhang, 75, Chinese vice president between 2012 and 2017 and considered one of the most influential men in Chinese politics of the past decade.

The tennis association also expressed solidarity with the Chinese tennis player and requested the opening of an investigation on the subject, through statements by its President Steve Simon.

This complaint was made Monday by the Association for Tennis Professionals, demanding a “complete, clear and transparent investigation” to guarantee the tennis player’s safety. EFE


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