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Arnold Schwarzenegger separates from wife of 25 years Maria Shriver

10 MAY 2011

Arnold Schwarzenegger and his wife Maria Shriver have surprised the world with news of their separation after 25 years of marriage.

In a joint statement, the couple said that the mutual decision had been made with "a great deal of thought, reflection, discussion and prayer", during "a time of great personal and professional transition for each of us."

"At this time, we are living apart, while we work on the future of our relationship," they added.


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"We continue to parent our four children together. They are the light and the centre of both of our lives."

Maria, 55, is a TV presenter and a member of the Kennedy dynasty - her mother Eunice Kennedy Shriver was the sister of President John F Kennedy.

She married 63-year-old Arnold – an Austrian bodybuilder/action film star who served as Governor of California - in 1986.

They first met in 1977 when they were introduced at a charity tennis tournament and tied the knot nine years later in a lavish ceremony in Massachusetts.


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In 1989, they welcomed their first child, Katherine, and their second daughter Christina arrived in 1991.

Sons Patrick and Christopher followed in 1993 and 1997.

In light of her husband's decision to run for the position of California's governor in 2003, Maria took unpaid leave from her anchor position on Dateline NBC to support his political aspirations.

He was re-elected in 2006, and served the maximum two terms allowed by state law before leaving office in January.

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