Chinese actress Zheng Shuang allegedly abandoned two children born to surrogates in the United States after splitting up with her partner. The scandal has taken a blow to the celebrity’s A-list career, with international brands such as Prada dropping her as an ambassador.
Shuang’s partner Zhang Heng took to China’s social media platform Weibo earlier this month claiming that he has been stranded in the United States for over a year and left alone to “take care of and protect two young and innocent lives,” reports CNN.
The couple was believed to have split while two surrogate mothers they hired were pregnant with their children, with Shuang accused of abandoning the babies.
Alleged photos of the children’s birth certificates were publicized on a Chinese media outlet, revealing that they were born in the United States in December 2019 and January 2020, with Shuang and Heng identified as the parents. According to BBC, local media suggest Heng cannot enter China with the children without paperwork signed by Shuang.
A recording was also published of a phone call, during which Shuang’s parents allegedly suggested abandoning the children or giving them up for adoption, while Shuang allegedly expressed frustration that abortion was not a viable option given the mothers were seven months pregnant at the time, reports CNN.
Within days of the Weibo post revealing the scandal on Weibo, Shuang was censured by state media and condemned by China’s ruling Communist Party (CCP) agencies. “Surrogacy is clearly banned in our country, and its disregard of life makes one bristle with anger,” state broadcaster CCTV said in a commentary, reports CNN.
According to CNN, the CCP’s top commission overseeing political and legal affairs accused Shuang of “taking advantage of legal loopholes” by seeking surrogate mothers in the U.S. and called her actions “definitely not law-abiding.”
In response to the scandal and backlash, Shuang wrote on Weibo on Tuesday that “this is a very sad and private matter for me.” Although she didn’t directly address allegations over the surrogacy dispute, she claims she “did not violate the state’s instructions while on Chinese soil and respected all laws and regulations while abroad.”
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