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Sports: Opinion: IOC backs China and Beijing Games instead of condemning treatment of Peng Shuai, Uyghurs

Disappearance of Peng Shuai: The world of tennis worried about the fate of the Chinese player

 Disappearance of Peng Shuai: The world of tennis worried about the fate of the Chinese player © Greg Wood The Chinese tennis player, Peng Shuai, disappeared on November 4 after accusing the former vice prime minister of the Chinese regime , Zhang Gaoli. (Greg Wood / AFP) "Where is Peng Shuai? The international tennis is prey to a terrible concern in recent days, while the Chinese player Peng Shuai has mysteriously disappeared after have accused of rape the former Vice-Prime Minister of the regime, Zhang Gaoli , on November 4th on social networks.

The International Olympic Committee is already complicit in the coercion and abuse of millions of Chinese residents in the interest of appeasing its 2022 hosts. What’s one more?

IOC president Thomas Bach said he had a 30-minute video call with tennis player Peng Shuai. © Andy Brownbill, AP IOC president Thomas Bach said he had a 30-minute video call with tennis player Peng Shuai.

The supposedly “neutral” IOC was a willing participant Sunday in the Chinese government’s efforts to whitewash its troubling treatment of tennis player Peng Shuai, who has barely been seen and still has not been heard from in an independent format since accusing a former high-ranking official of sexual assault nearly three weeks ago.

Tennis: An email attributed to Chinese Peng Shuai raises worries

 Tennis: An email attributed to Chinese Peng Shuai raises worries © AFP / Archives L E pattern of the WTA, which manages the female professional tennis circuit, expressed his "anxiety" concerning the safety of Peng Shuai And asserted doubt official information from China on the champion. The world of tennis has been without news from the player since it accused the beginning of November a former Chinese senior to have forced him to sex.

With criticism and suspicion rising across the globe, and the Beijing Olympics just over two months away, China is desperate to shift the focus elsewhere. And the IOC was only too happy to oblige, announcing that President Thomas Bach had held a 30-minute video call with Peng and all was fine! Just fine!

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There was a photograph of Bach conversing with a smiling Peng to accompany the press release, as well as fawning and over-the-top confirmations of the three-time Olympian’s well-being.

“She explained that she is safe and well, living at her home in Beijing, but would like to have her privacy respected at this time. That is why she prefers to spend her time with friends and family right now,” the IOC said in its release, its wording eerily similar to an email Peng supposedly sent WTA chairman and CEO Steve Simon last week.

Tennis players take on Communist Party: Where is Peng Shuai?

  Tennis players take on Communist Party: Where is Peng Shuai? Some of the world's most famous tennis players, distraught by the disappearance of colleague Peng Shuai, are challenging China's Communist Party to get answers. So far it's a standoff with little visible impact as tennis players like Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic — joined by tennis governing bodies, human rights groups, retired players, and several athletes' lobbies — try to turn their profiles into power. Peng disappearedSo far it's a standoff with little visible impact as tennis players like Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic — joined by tennis governing bodies, human rights groups, retired players, and several athletes' lobbies — try to turn their profiles into power.

Why, things are going so swimmingly with Peng that the former world No. 1 in doubles and Bach are going to have dinner when the IOC’s grand poobah gets to Beijing in January. (How that’s even possible given anyone connected to the Games is supposedly subject to a “closed loop” that prohibits interaction with the outside world is a detail the IOC probably prefers be left unnoticed.)

But it is obvious this was little more than a sham. The IOC did not make any audio from the call with Peng available. It did not arrange a news conference so Peng could assure reporters herself that she is OK. It didn’t even acknowledge Peng’s sexual assault allegations, or mention the concern that prompted the need for such a call with the IOC.

In a Nov. 2 post on Weibo, a Chinese social media site, Peng said she’d been sexually assaulted by Zhang Gaoli, China’s former vice premier. The post was quickly taken down, and Peng has been largely out of sight and unreachable by anyone outside China since.

Missing Chinese tennis star reappears in public in Beijing

  Missing Chinese tennis star reappears in public in Beijing BEIJING (AP) — Missing tennis star Peng Shuai reappeared in public Sunday at a youth tournament in Beijing, according to photos released by the organizer, as the ruling Communist Party tried to quell fears abroad while suppressing information in China about Peng after she accused a senior leader of sexual assault. The post by the China Open on the Weibo social media service made no mention of Peng’s disappearance or her accusation. Peng was shown standing beside a court, waving and signing oversize commemorative tennis balls for children.

“By taking a nonchalant approach to Peng Shuai’s disappearance and by refusing to mention her serious allegations of sexual assault, IOC President Thomas Bach and the IOC Athletes’ Commission demonstrate an abhorrent indifference to sexual violence and the well-being of female athletes,” Global Athlete said in a scathing statement.

“The IOC’s actions today again demonstrate that the organization fails athletes, aligns with abusive authoritarian regimes and disregards human rights.”

If anyone is surprised by this, they haven’t been paying attention. Under Bach, the IOC’s only guiding principle is self-interest.

The IOC has effectively given Russia a pass for its state-sponsored doping campaign, despite the pleas of clean athletes, because Russian president Vladimir Putin threw the IOC a $51 billion party in 2014 in Sochi. China has thumbed its nose at the promises it made to improve human rights ahead of the Beijing Games in 2008, and the IOC is so unbothered it went ahead and awarded the city another Olympics, making it the first to host both Summer and Winter Games.

Ioc President Bach phoned with Peng Shuai

 Ioc President Bach phoned with Peng Shuai Ioc President Thomas Bach has led a video phone with Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai. As the IOC announced, the chairman of the IOC Athlete Commission, Emma Terho from Finland, and the Chinese Ioc member Lingwei were present. © Jean-Christophe Bott / Keystone / DPA Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), has led a video phone with Peng Shuai. At the beginning of the 30-minute call, Peng Shuai has thanked the IOC for concern for her well-being.

Pressed to condemn China’s genocide of the minority Uyghur population, or its crackdowns on democracy in Hong Kong, the IOC has shrugged, saying it is not a political organization.

“We are not a super world government where the IOC could solve or even address issues for which not a United Nations Security Council, no G7, no G20 has a solution,” Bach said in March. “This is in the remit of politics.”

Oh, but when Bach wanted the Pyeongchang Olympics to occur without the threat of war hanging over them, he had no problem brokering a truce with North Korea. That he was touted by some as being deserving of the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts surely didn’t hurt.

What makes Bach and the IOC’s willingness to put shiny new stadiums and fat checks from sponsors ahead of actual human beings is they are one of the few entities that has sway with these dictators and despots.

Hosting an Olympics is an immense source of pride for these authoritarian regimes, a way to show off their power, wealth and status. Even the mere threat of taking them away would be a colossal embarrassment. Think it’s any coincidence that video call between Peng and Bach took place two days after Dick Pound, the longest-serving member of the IOC, suggested Beijing could be stripped of the Olympics if the situation wasn’t revolved?

Peng Shuai: the disappeared tenniswoman spotted in a restaurant ... Is it good?

 Peng Shuai: the disappeared tenniswoman spotted in a restaurant ... Is it good? © Agency / Bestimage Peng Shuai: The disappeared tenniswoman spotted in a restaurant ... Is it good? After several days of worry, the pennnis player Peng Shuai, who had accused rape a Chinese senior official, rebuked his appearance during a sporting event and restaurant. But these images intriguing and caution remains of bet. After accused, on the social network Weibo, a high Chinese director of rape on November 2nd, the tennis player Peng Shuai had disappeared .

Simon and the WTA have been relentless in their calls for China to produce Peng and allow her to speak, and all they got in response was a fishy-looking email. Pound, the IOC’s floater of trial balloons, tells Reuters the situation “may spin out of control” and “whether that escalates to a cessation of the Olympic Games I doubt it. But you never know," and lo and behold, Peng is suddenly available for a video chat.

The IOC has the capability to protect people who desperately need it from dangerous leaders and vengeful regimes.

It simply chooses not to.

Follow USA TODAY Sports columnist Nancy Armour on Twitter @nrarmour.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Opinion: IOC backs China and Beijing Games instead of condemning treatment of Peng Shuai, Uyghurs

IOC says it had 2nd video call with tennis player Peng Shuai .
LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — The International Olympic Committee said it held a second video call with Peng Shuai but again didn't release any video or transcript nor make any reference to the tennis player's sexual assault allegation against a former Chinese government official. The Grand Slam doubles champion and three-time Olympian dropped out of public view after making her accusation, prompting the women’s professional tennis tour to suspend its tournaments in China. As Beijing finishes preparations to host the Winter Olympics beginning Feb.

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