After nearly two decades of marriage, US comedian Chris Rock and his wife, Malaak Compton-Rock, announce that they will divorce.

“After much contemplation and 19 years of marriage, Chris and I have decided to go our separate ways,” Compton-Rock is quoted as saying in a statement, reports People magazine on Dec 28.

Rock, best known for his trenchant comedy routines about relations between black people and white people, most recently wrote, directed and starred in the film Top Five, released in the US earlier in December.

Meanwhile, Compton-Rock is the founder of Styleworks, a non-profit salon for women returning to work after receiving welfare benefits. The couple live in Alpine, New Jersey, with their two daughters, aged 12 and 10, according to People. Neither Rock’s publicist nor his divorce lawyer have responded to requests for comment. – Reuters

Soon to be single: Chris Rock (right) and his wife Malaak Compton-Rock in 2010. – Reuters