Anna Murdoch: 'Marriage had died a long time ago'

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The Independent Online

Three years after the end of their 32-year marriage, Rupert Murdoch's ex-wife, Anna, has broken her silence to criticise her ex-husband over the break-up. She also said she does not think any of their three children should ultimately take over the reins of the News Corporation, the family empire.

In an interview with the Australian Women's Weekly, Anna Murdoch Mann said the Rupert Murdoch she knew and loved "died a long time ago". She said he sabotaged their happy marriage by having an affair with his translator, Wendi Deng, whom he has since married. Mr Murdoch had asserted that his liaison with Ms Deng began after the marriage ended.

Ms Murdoch Mann said she deplored the battle between her children for succession at News Corp. "There's been such a lot of pressure that they needn't have had at their age." Asked which one she thought would be best suited to take the top job, she replied: "Actually, I'd like none of them to."

The Murdoch's oldest child, Elisabeth, 32, appeared to take herself out of the running for control of News Corp last year when she quit her job running BSkyB. But the competition between Lachlan, 30, and James, 28, for control of the $39bn (£27bn) empire, is as fierce as ever. Ms Murdoch Mann's ties to the companies were almost completely cut after the 1998 divorce.

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