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LDP division urges gov’t response to missing Chinese tennis player

  • December 7, 2021
  • , Asahi , p. 4
  • JMH Translation

The Liberal Democratic Party’s Foreign Affairs Division met on Dec. 6 to discuss the issue of Chinese professional tennis player Peng Shuai, whose safety has been a matter of concern since she accused a high-ranking Chinese Communist Party official of sexual violence. The participants at the division meeting called for a strong response from the Japanese government.


On November 2 on social media, Peng accused former Deputy Prime Minister Zhang Gaoli of forcing her to have sex with him and reportedly went missing temporarily afterward. On December 1, the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), which coordinates women’s tennis tours globally, announced the suspension of all tournaments in China, including Hong Kong.


Chief Cabinet Secretary Matsuno Hirokazu said at a press conference on December 2 that the Japanese government will “watch the overall situation closely.”  


“Japan has emphasized ‘dialogue and cooperation’ as the core of human rights diplomacy,” said Foreign Affairs Division chief Sato Masahisa at the Dec. 6 meeting. “Remaining silent about the incident would be interpreted as having nothing to say.” The meeting participants shared the opinion that the government should respond to the incident more firmly.

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