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Peng Shuai during a match in the 2020 Australian Open. Photo: Fred Lee/Getty Images

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said that the Biden administration is "deeply concerned" about tennis player Peng Shuai's disappearance and is calling on the Chinese government to provide "independent, verifiable proof" of her whereabouts.

Why it matters: Peng has not been seen since she accused China's former vice premier of sexual assault earlier this month. China's state-controlled media suppressed all reporting on the case.

The big picture: Peng wrote a lengthy social media post accusing a former vice premier of China's ruling party of sexual assault, per AP, but the post has since been removed.

What they're saying: "[Any] report of sexual assault should be investigated and support a woman's ability to speak out and take accountability," Psaki said at a press conference on Friday.

  • "[We will] continue to stand up for the freedom of speech and we know the PRC has zero tolerance for criticism and a record of silencing those that speak out and we continue to condemn those practices," Psaki added.

Go deeper

Mitt Romney calls Ray Dalio's China investments a "sad moral lapse"

Sen. Mitt Romney walks to a Senate Republican caucus meeting at the Capitol on Oct. 7. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) on Thursday criticized billionaire Ray Dalio's investments in China, writing in a tweet that "his feigned ignorance of China's horrific abuses and rationalization of complicit investments there is a sad moral lapse."

Driving the news: Romney's comments come after Dalio's firm, Bridgewater Associates, the largest hedge fund in the world, raised $1.3 billion in November for a new private fund in China, Bloomberg reports.

Dec 2, 2021 - World

U.S. and EU signal "converging" views on China

President Biden and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. Photo: Jeff J Mitchell - Pool/Getty Images

The U.S. and the European Union are adopting "increasingly convergent" views on the threat posed by the Chinese government, according to senior Biden administration officials, deepening a trend that could tilt the scales in an era of great power competition.

Why it matters: European leaders were initially wary of President Biden's campaign to rally a coalition of U.S. allies to challenge China, hoping to duck a confrontation between the bloc's two largest trading partners. But the winds in Europe seem to be shifting, in part due to Beijing's growing belligerence.

Dec 2, 2021 - World

U.S. defense chief denounces China hypersonic missile pursuit

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and South Korean Defense Minister Suh Wook during a ceremony with in Seoul, South Korea, on Thursday. Photo: Ahn Young-Joon - Pool/Getty Images

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said Thursday the U.S. would "maintain the capabilities to defend and deter" threats from China's government and warned the country's hypersonic weapons program was increasing regional tensions.

Driving the news: Austin made the comments in Seoul after meeting with his South Korean counterpart to discuss regional security matters, including threats posed by China's government and the North Korean regime, which he also expressed concern about.