The ATP has released its second statement on Peng Shuai as they are deeply concerned about the wellbeing of the Chinese tennis player. Peng went missing in China after accusing China's former vice premier Zhang Gaoli of sexual assault.
"Developments in recent days in the case of Peng Shuai are deeply unsettling. This issue is bigger than tennis. As shown by the outpouring of concern within and beyond out sport," ATP chairman Andrea Gaudenzi said in a posted on Friday.
"Her safety is our most immediate concern and clarity is required on the situation. The need for verifiable direct communication with her is vital."
The WTA didn't believe Peng sent them an email
The WTA received a mail that was claimed to be sent by Peng.
In the mail, it was said that Peng was safe and that the accusations made were false. However, WTA CEO Steve Simon didn't believe that mail was actually sent by Peng. "The statement released today by Chinese state media concerning Peng Shuai only raises my concerns as to her safety and whereabouts," WTA CEO Simon said.
" I have a hard time believing that Peng Shuai actually wrote the email we received or believes what is being attributed to her. Peng Shuai displayed incredible courage in describing an allegation of sexual assault against a former top official in the Chinese government.
The WTA and the rest of the world need independent and verifiable proof that she is safe. I have repeatedly tried to reach her via numerous forms of communication, to no avail. "Peng Shuai must be allowed to speak freely, without coercion or intimidation from any source.
Her allegation of sexual assault must be respected, investigated with full transparency and without censorship. "The voices of women need to be heard and respected, not censored nor dictated to”.