Australian Defense Minister Urges Show Business and Sports Stars To Speak Out Over Shuai Peng Case

【Japan Himalaya League】 Author: Beiji  Translator: Ranting

On January 10, Australian Defence Minister Peter Dutton urged acting stars and well-known athletes in the sports world to use their popularity to actively speak out on the Shuai Peng case and bring the world’s attention to Peng’s situation.

Shuai Peng was once the 14th-ranked singles player in the world and a member of the women’s doubles championship team at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships. Her situation has been under international scrutiny since she announced on social media last year that she was sexually assaulted by former Chinese Communist Party Vice Premier Gaoli Zhang.

Australian Defence Minister Dutton said the Australian Open will start on January 17, and he called on Australian acting and sports stars to take this opportunity to actively speak out on the Shuai Peng case and use the popularity effect to arouse the attention of all walks of life to Peng’s situation.

In an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald, Dutton said, “I don’t understand how in 2021, in the age of MeToo, an international tennis star who announces she was raped and sexually assaulted is effectively under house arrest, and even her social media accounts have been blocked. How can we tolerate this? We can’t do that. The best way to do this is to discuss these things publicly, or this will not change.”

File photo of Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton. (Photo from The Epoch Times)

MeToo is a truth-telling campaign launched by a group of American actresses in October 2017 in response to the scandal of producer Harvey Weinstein’s sexual assault of several actresses. The campaign encourages women who have been sexually assaulted to come forward and speak out about their experiences as a way to bring awareness to society.

While many celebrities have been silent on the Shuai Peng case, some sports stars have also raised their voices about it at the risk of damaging their business interests in Communist China. For example, Serbian player Novak Djokovic, ranked No. 1 in the world, publicly expressed his shock at what happened to Shuai Peng; Japanese tennis actress Naomi Osaka also tweeted to follow up on Peng’s whereabouts and expressed concern for her safety.

While expressing praise for Naomi Osaka’s outspokenness, Yaqiu Wang, a researcher with the China Department of Human Rights Watch (HRW), noted that the CCP has for years used its market access to silence critical international voices. Hollywood, for example, has been forced by interest to maintain a “collective silence” and is afraid to speak out on human rights issues in the CCP. Yet women’s rights activists and victims of sexual abuse in China are facing censorship, harassment, surveillance, and even conviction for their words by the CCP government. It is therefore important for the international community to pay attention to and support the rights of women in China.

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Posted by: Ranting

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