A court in Beijing, on Tuesday, ruled against a Chinese woman in a Me Too case that stretched in the courts for three courts. This comes as a blow to the movement whose legacy still remains uncertain. In a judgment that was released late Tuesday night, the Haidian People's Court said that Zhou Xiaoxuan, who had become the face of the country's #MeToo movement, was not able to give ample proof in claiming that Zhu Jun, her superior at her place of work, sexually harassed her.
Zhou was a former intern at Chinese state broadcaster CCTV and went public with accusations against Zhu in 2018. Zhu is a prominent CCTV host.
Dozens of victims began to speak out about their past experiences of being harassed or assaulted. Since then, the movement was widely suppressed by authorities as activists found their online posts censored and faced pressure from authorities when trying to hold protests.
"I'm very thankful for everyone, whether we win or lose, I'm very honored to have experienced these last three years," Zhou told reporters outside the court.
While one yelled “pandemic safety" trying to prevent Zhou from speaking, another man questioned whether it was okay for her to speak alone or not.
In another incident, police quickly surrounded a woman who tried to hold up a sign that read “Standing Together”. The sign was ripped and the woman said that she was asked for her national identification number.
Zhou filed a suit against Zhu to counter a suit he had already lodged against her. In the suit, she accused him of groping and forcibly kissing her in 2014. She had asked for a public apology and 50,000 yuan ($7,600) in damages. Zhu has denied the claims.
While the movement does not see more protests, some sections of people are still pushing to get justice for victims of sexual violence.
This comes as a series of sexual assault and rape accusations are on the rise and have drawn national attention. The most prominent one being a case of sexual assault made by an Alibaba employee against two men. Chinese-Canadian singer Kris Wu was also arrested in Beijing on suspicion of rape.
(With inputs from Associated Press)