Singer Faye Wong announced yesterday that she has divorced her second husband, Li Yapeng.
The disclosure on her Weibo page was reposted more than 70,000 times and attracted almost 30,000 comments from her shocked fans within half an hour.
"Our affinity and connection as a husband and wife in this life has come to an end," she wrote on the mainland's Twitter-like social media platform at around 7.30pm. "I'm well. Please take care of yourself as well."
The 44-year-old Canto-pop and Mando-pop diva, who is based in Beijing, married mainlander and former actor Li in 2005.
In a posting on his Weibo page later, Li, who is two years Wong's junior, admitted that they had broken up.
"What I want is a family, but you are destined to be a legend," he said in the post, implying that the two divorced because of a difference of values.
He said their daughter would be taken into his custody and that there would not be any disputes over money because the pair had remained independent in their financial affairs.
State-owned CCTV also put the news on its Weibo page. Citing an anonymous source said to be close to Li, it said the couple had signed a divorce agreement in Urumqi , Xinjiang , where Li was born, and that he was on his way back to Beijing.
The couple set up the Smile Angel Foundation, a charity for Chinese children with cleft palates, in 2006 after their daughter Li Yan was born with a severe cleft lip. They hosted their first charity gala dinner for the foundation in Hong Kong in May, showing no signs their relationship was on the rocks. The event, held on Li Yan's birthday, raised a total of about HK$56 million including funds from the record-breaking sale of a painting by contemporary artist Zeng Fanzhi for HK$30 million. A panda painting by their daughter fetched HK$1 million.
Wong married her first husband, musician Dou Wei, in 1996 and divorced three years later. They had a daughter, who lives with Wong.
Internet users expressed their disbelief at the news.
"Are you getting back together with Nicholas Tse?" one asked.
Singer-actor Nicholas Tse Ting-fung and Wong were in a relationship between 2000 and 2004. In 2006, Tse married actress Cecilia Cheung Pak-chi. The couple divorced in 2011.