Cecilia Cheung and Nicholas Tse to split

Hong Kong celebrity couple Cecilia Cheung and Nicholas Tse have confirmed that they will be splitting up, ending weeks of speculation on the status of their five-year marriage.

The actors broke their silence separately. Tse sent out a statement on Friday afternoon hinting at a separation or divorce. He said that he had decided to 'proceed with family matters' after careful consideration.

Part of his statement read: "Today, I will proceed with family matters. I hope it will bring external speculation to an end, so my family can lead a quiet life and my two sons can grow up healthy and happy."

Tse concluded his statement yesterday: "Finally, I am deeply thankful for everything Cecilia Cheung has done in these five years and truly wish her well."

Tse's statement came hours after the publication of Cheung's explosive interview with Oriental Daily, which she accused him of leaking false information to the public to depict a negative image of her as a gold-digger and troublemaker.

She also blasted him for being a neglectful husband and father, and told him to "stop pretending to be a good man, a good dad."

Cheung, 31 and Tse, 30, secretly married in the Philippines in 2006 and have two sons, Lucas, 3 and Quintas 1.

Much has been reported about the celebrity couple's marital woes for the past month ever since Cheung reconciled with actor Edison Chen. The two were involved in a highly publicised sex photo scandal in 2008.

Cheung, who had remained silent during the past month, finally spoke up on Friday and revealed details of their relationship.

Besides claiming that Tse was behind a smear campaign to tarnish her image, she also reasoned that Tse was doing so because he did not want to share his fortune with her.

"But the truth is, I don't need to depend on him. I'm not poor. Even if I quit entertainment, I would be okay," said Cheung.

On Wednesday, her assistant Andy posted on her microblog a statement by a friend of Cheung's called Yuki Lee.

In it, Lee said Tse had been largely absent in his children's lives and that he faces his computer all day and not say a word to his wife and sons.

Lee also said Cheung bought Tse a car and a watch worth hundreds of thousands of dollars: "If she is really so greedy, would she need to spend so much money on that husband of hers?"

Cheung's manager Emily also spoke up and claimed that she was horrified at how the Tse family had "vilified" Cheung, while the actress suffered in silence to keep the family together.

klim@sph.com.sg


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