Survivor Kylie breaks up with her 'protector'

New setback for singer as she splits from the actor who supported her through illness
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Sparkling in sequins, plumes and diamonds, her spectacular, triumphant return to public life told the world she was a survivor.

But within weeks of stepping back on stage after beating breast cancer, the singer Kylie Minogue, 38, has announced that her three-and-a-half-year relationship with Olivier Martinez, the French actor who provided "protection" and support as she battled back to health, was over.

This latest upheaval will raise concerns about the impact it may have on her ongoing recuperation.

The break-up follows another health problem - described as a respiratory infection - that forced her to leave the stage an hour into a Manchester show three weeks ago. She has since completed the tour.

Kylie and Martinez, 41, announced their relationship was over days after a newspaper reported he had been seen meeting two women, model Sarai Givati and Lost star Michelle Rodriguez, in Los Angeles.

A statement issued on their behalf said Kylie and Martinez were "no longer" a couple. "They have made it clear that the decision ... was mutual and amicable. The media's false accusations of disloyalty have saddened them both. The two remain very close friends."

And the show goes on for Kylie. She is to attend a party on Tuesday to launch an exhibition of her costumes, at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London.