Connect with us

Global

Mystery Deepens Over Missing Chinese Tennis Player After ‘new Photos’ Emerge

Avatar

Published

on

The mystery surrounding Peng Shuai has taken a fresh twist after photos emerged purporting to show the missing Chinese tennis player.

Three photos posted on Twitter by journalist Shen Shiwei, working for CGTN, the international arm of government-controlled state broadcaster CCTV, show the 35-year-old smiling with a grey cat while surrounded by soft toys.

Mr Shen said the pictures were posted on the player’s WeChat messaging app alongside text saying: “Happy weekend.”

Image:
The photos show the 35-year-old smiling with a grey cat while surrounded by soft toys

He added that “her friend shared the three photos and the screenshot of Peng’s WeChat moments”.

Experts have expressed scepticism and questioned the authenticity of the images.

Advertisement

Others also pointed to the presence in one of the photos of a framed picture featuring Winnie the Pooh – a character banned in China after people mockingly likened him to President Xi Jinping.

Peng, a former Wimbledon doubles champion, disappeared after writing a social media post on 2 November accusing a former top government official of forcing her to have sex after playing tennis at his home. Her original post on Weibo has been taken down.

An email said to be from Peng was released on Wednesday by CGTN, but doubts have also been raised over its authenticity.

It says the sexual assault claim “is not true” and adds: “I’m not missing, nor am I unsafe. I’ve just been resting at home and everything is fine”.

It comes after Andy Murray and the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) joined an online campaign to help find Peng.

The two-time Wimbledon champion tweeted that her “whereabouts (are) currently unknown after making sexual abuse allegations against (a) Chinese government official”.

The LTA said it was a “very concerning situation” and that the “immediate priority is to establish that Peng Shuai is safe and well”.

It is important that Peng is “able to speak freely and not subject to any form of censorship”, the association added.

Murray linked his tweet to a video of Czech player Barbora Krejcikova speaking about her country’s liberation from communism during the Velvet Revolution of 1989.

Martina Navratilova, standing behind Krejcikova, is in tears. Navratilova defected from communist Czechoslovakia early in her career, becoming a US citizen in 1981. The revolution ended communist rule in the country and in 1993, the nation was dissolved, becoming the independent states of the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Murray said of the footage: “This speech gives us a reminder and some hope that things can change in the future. #WhereIsPengShuai.”

Other tennis stars including Serena Williams, Naomi Osaka and Novak Djokovic are among those concerned over her whereabouts.

In a statement, the LTA added that it had written to the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), offering its assistance in efforts to establish Peng’s “safety and wellbeing”.

The LTA added: “We are also keen to support any further measures that the tours can introduce to improve the safety of all players.”

China’s foreign ministry claimed on Friday that it was unaware of the controversy.

Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian told reporters it was “not a diplomatic question and I’m not aware of the situation”.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

0:43

Messages about China tennis player ‘censored’

Steve Simon, the head of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), said it “only raises my concerns as to her safety and whereabouts”.

“I have a hard time believing that Peng Shuai actually wrote the email we received or believes what is being attributed to her,” he said in a statement.

“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.”

Mr Simon said Peng’s sexual assault claim must be investigated with “full transparency” and she should be allowed to speak “without coercion or intimidation”.

Speaking to NBC News, he also raised the prospect of rethinking WTA events in China if things are not resolved satisfactorily.

Human rights organisation Amnesty International said Chinese authorities must prove Peng is safe and fully investigate the sexual assault allegations.

The country has a “track record of forcing statements out of individuals under duress, or else simply fabricating them”, said its China researcher Doriane Lau.

Read More

Article: news.sky.com

Global

WHO Estimates 15m People Have Died Directly or Indirectly From COVID – More Than Double Official Death Toll

Avatar

Published

on

The World Health Organisation estimates that 15 million people worldwide have now died of coronavirus – or as a result of its impact on health services.

WHO data shows the number of excess COVID mortalities to be somewhere between 13.3 million and 16.6 million people from 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2021. This is more than double the official death toll of around six million.

Excess mortality refers to the number of people who have died of the virus either directly or indirectly by being unable to access health services for other conditions.

Croatia drops entry requirement, as Apple hit by China lockdown; follow live COVID updates

The figures were compiled using country-reported data and statistical modelling, the WHO said.

Advertisement

There were 14.9 million excess deaths associated with COVID-19 by the end of 2021, the UN body said on Thursday.

Most excess COVID deaths (86%) happened in Asia, Europe and the Americas, according to the figures.

More on Covid-19

COVID-19: Deaths involving coronavirus rise for sixth successive week in England and Wales, ONS says

Cinderella cast members call for compensation after show cancelled

Man accused of using coronavirus loans to fund terror organisation Islamic State in Syria

Middle-income countries accounted for 81% of deaths, with 28% occurring in upper-middle-income countries and 4% in low-income ones.

Some 68% of all excess deaths worldwide happened in just 10 countries.

There was a higher rate for men (57%) than there was for women (43%), with more excess deaths among the elderly than younger generations.

Podcast
Due to your consent preferences, you’re not able to view this.
Open Privacy Options

Follow the Daily podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Spreaker

WHO director-general Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus commented: “These sobering data not only point to the impact of the pandemic but also to the need for all countries to invest in more resilient health systems that can sustain essential health services during crises, including stronger health information systems.

“WHO is committed to working with all countries to strengthen their health information systems to generate better data for better decisions and better outcomes.”

Read More

Original Source: news.sky.com

Continue Reading

Global

Pope Francis Seen Using Wheelchair for the First Time for Mobility Reasons

Avatar

Published

on

The Pope has been pictured using a wheelchair – the first time he’s used one in public due to the knee pain that’s made it hard for him to walk and stand.

Francis, 85, was wheeled on stage and helped into a seat during an audience with a group of nuns and religious superiors from around the world at the Vatican.

He appears to be having a flare-up of sciatica, a nerve condition he suffers with that he’s called his “troublesome guest”.

The Pope has had to cancel or cut short activities several times in the last month because of pain in his right knee.

He was pictured in a wheelchair last July after major intestinal surgery, but this is believed to be the first time he’s used one in public due to his mobility problems.

Advertisement

Before Thursday’s event, he was able to walk the roughly 10 metres or so from the side entrance of the stage to his seat with some help.

He recently received some injections to try to relieve the pain but has continued to struggle.

More on Pope Francis

Be kind to your mother-in-law, urges Pope Francis

Ukraine war: ‘In the name of God – stop this massacre’ – Pope’s message to Vladimir Putin

Pope Francis praises Morocco for ‘beautiful’ solidarity over boy trapped in well

His impaired movement was apparent over Easter when he attended but did not take charge of masses at St Peter’s Basilica, instead delegating a cardinal or archbishop to preside.

During a trip to Malta in April he was also pictured using an elevator platform to get on and off the plane.

Read More

Original Article: news.sky.com

Continue Reading

Global

Woman Pulled Alive From Rubble Six Days After Building Collapsed

Avatar

Published

on

A woman has been found alive in the rubble of a building that partially collapsed almost six days earlier, Chinese state media has said.

At least five people are confirmed to have died and possibly dozens are still missing following the disaster in the city of Changsha, in central China‘s Hunan Province, on 29 April.

The unidentified woman has become the 10th survivor and was rescued shortly after midnight today, about 132 hours after the rear of the six-storey building suddenly caved in, the official Xinhua News Agency has reported.

The woman was conscious and told rescuers how to pull her out without causing further injury, Xinhua added.

Teams had used dogs and hand tools as well as drones and electronic life detectors in the search.

Advertisement

All the survivors were reportedly in good condition after being treated in a hospital and it is thought intermittent rain showers over the last few days may have helped their chances of survival without food or water.

At least nine people have been arrested in relation to the collapse of what Xinhua has described as a “self-built building”.

More on China

Morgue staff in Shanghai open body bag to find man alive inside

China: Five people rescued from building collapse, as President Xi Jinping calls for dozens still missing to be found ‘at all costs’

Hostile states pose ‘real risk’ to UK security as MPs warn reforms needed to prevent ‘next great parliamentary scandal’

This includes its owner, on suspicion of ignoring building codes or committing other violations.

Three people in charge of design and construction were also held, along with five others who allegedly gave a false safety assessment for a guest house on the building’s fourth to sixth floors.

The building also housed residences, a cafe and shops.

Image:
An aerial photo shows the site of the collapsed residential building in Changsha, central China’s Hunan Province

There has been increase in the number of collapses of self-built buildings in recent years.

Last month, Chinese President Xi Jinping called for additional checks to uncover structural weaknesses.

Following the building collapse at the weekend, he urged for more victims to be found in the rubble “at all costs”.

Poor adherence to safety standards, including the illegal addition of extra floors and failure to use reinforcing iron bars, is often blamed for similar disasters.

China also suffers from decaying infrastructure such as gas pipes that has led to explosions and collapses.

Read More

Source: news.sky.com

Continue Reading

Trending

BaypointNews.com