July 15, 2011 / 10:07 PM / 8 years ago

Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony marriage breaks apart

Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez arrive at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Benefit celebrating the opening of Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, in New York, May 2, 2011. REUTERS/Mike Segar

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Singer and actress Jennifer Lopez and Latin pop singer Marc Anthony have decided to end their marriage after seven years, the couple said on Friday.

“This was a very difficult decision,” they said in a joint statement. “It is a painful time for all involved, and we appreciate the respect of our privacy at this time.”

Lopez and Anthony, who have 3 year-old twins, said they had “come to amicable conclusions on all matters.”

Lopez, 41, has most recently been seen on television as a judge on No. 1-rated show “American Idol,” and her single “On The Floor” has been a top ten hit in several countries.

The entertainer, who topped People magazine’s “most beautiful” list this year, has scored hit songs with “If You Had My Love” and “Jenny from the Block.” She also has become a top star in romantic comedy movies, most recently appearing in 2010 film “The Back-up Plan.”

Anthony is a two-time Grammy winner and the top selling salsa artist of all time. His hit songs include “Si Tu No Te Fueras” and “Contra La Corriente.”

Lopez and Anthony have a pair of fraternal twins named Emme and Max who were born in 2008.

The couple performed together in a 2007 tour called “Juntos en Concierto.” They also worked on each other’s albums and starred opposite each other in 2006 film “El Cantante.”

The two were married months after Lopez’s engagement to actor Ben Affleck ended, and days after Anthony’s divorce from former Miss Puerto Rico Dayanara Torres was finalized.

Reporting by Christine Kearney and Alex Dobuzinskis: editing by Bob Tourtellotte

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