IOC says it spoke to China’s Peng Shuai last week

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ATHENS — The International Olympic Committee spoke to Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai last week and will meet her in Beijing during next month’s Winter Olympics, it said on Wednesday.

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Peng’s situation became concerning in November when the former women’s doubles number one alleged that a former Chinese vice premier, Zhang Gaoli, had sexually assaulted her in the past. After this social media post, she was absent from public view for almost three weeks.

Last month, Peng said she never accused anyone of sexually assaulting her and that the message she posted was misunderstood. Zhang did not comment on the matter.

“Since the first call the IOC had with Peng Shuai on November 21, 2021, the IOC team has stayed in touch with her and had a number of conversations with her – the last one last week,” said one. IOC spokesperson.

“She mentioned again that she was looking forward to a meeting with IOC President Thomas Bach and Emma Terho, Chair of the IOC Athletes’ Commission, to which we had invited her in the first conversation.”

The IOC has had several phone calls with the player, but international concerns over her safety and well-being have not been allayed.

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The Women’s Tennis Association has suspended tournaments in China over concerns over Peng’s safety.

China did not directly comment on Peng’s initial message, but said after the WTA decision that it “opposes the politicization of sport”.

The Beijing Olympics will begin on February 4.

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  2. A file photo of Chinese Peng Shuai serving during a match at the Australian Open, January 15, 2019.

    Chinese tennis star Peng denies sexual assault charges

  3. A file photo of Chinese Peng Shuai serving during a match at the Australian Open, January 15, 2019.

    WTA suspends tournaments in China over Peng Shuai’s situation

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