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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Announces Separation from Wife of 18 Years Sophie Grégoire: 'Deep Love and Respect'

Trudeau shared the news on Wednesday in a post published in both English and French

<p>Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty</p> Justin Trudeau and wife Sophie Gregoire

Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty

Justin Trudeau and wife Sophie Gregoire

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife of 18 years, Sophie Grégoire, are separating.

Trudeau, 52, shared the news on Wednesday in a post published in both English and French on Instagram, writing: "Hi everyone, Sophie and I would like to share the fact that after many meaningful and difficult conversation, we have made the decision to separate."

Trudeau continued: "As always, we remain a close family with deep love and respect for each other and for everything we have built and will continue to build. For the well-being of our children, we ask that you respect our and their privacy. Thank you."

The Canadian Prime Minister's office confirmed the news to PEOPLE, saying in a statement that the couple have "signed a legal separation agreement."

"They have worked to ensure that all legal and ethical steps with regards to their decision to separate have been taken, and will continue to do so moving forward," the statement said.

<p>Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty</p>

Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty

The statement continued: "They remain a close family and Sophie and the Prime Minister are focused on raising their kids in a safe, loving and collaborative environment. Both parents will be a constant presence in their children’s lives and Canadians can expect to often see the family together."

Trudeau's office added that the family "will be together on vacation, beginning next week."

Trudeau has been in office since 2015.

The couple share three children: Xavier, Ella-Grace and Hadrian.

Gregoire was by Trudeau's side in 2021 when he celebrated his narrow reelection victory, thanking his family in a speech.

"And beyond everything I want to thank my family," Trudeau said, before acknowledging his wife and kids for their support.

"Sophie: 12 years ago when we decided to be involved together in politics, it's because we wanted to defend our values, because we wanted to contribute to build a stronger Canada. And since the beginning, we did that together," he said at the time. "Thank you."

In April, Trudeau shared a series of photos of the couple in honor of Sophie's birthday, writing, "Happy birthday, Sophie. From this, to this, and everything in between, there’s no one I’d rather have by my side… I love you, mon amour."

The two were married in May 2005.

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Read the original article on People.