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Friday, September 25, 1998 Published at 23:38 GMT 00:38 UK


Neeson and Richardson deny divorce rumours

Actors Liam Neeson and Natasha Richardson say their marriage is not over.

The couple are taking legal action over recent press reports.

Mr Neeson has instructed lawyers in Belfast to demand a retraction of the stories.

[ image: Natasha Richardson collecting an award for her role in Cabaret]
Natasha Richardson collecting an award for her role in Cabaret
His solicitor Paul Tweed said there was absolutely no truth in the claims of a break-up.

He said Liam Neeson had been particularly concerned about media harrassment of his family in Northern Ireland.

His mother was particularly upset: "Having read these stories in the press it obviously caused her a considerable degree of distress at the time."

The actor, born in Ballymena, Northern Ireland is also concerned about the effect of the stories on his own position.

He is an ambassador for Ireland to the United Nations children's organisation, UNICEF.

Mr Tweed said: "He is very proud of his solid family background with his own children at the moment, and it's important to him that these totally false rumours are put to rest."

He added the rumours seemed to have been started by a case of mistaken identity in London.

The couple are currently in New York, he added.

Describing the reports as "unfounded and hurtful," he said they were not prepared to "permit totally unwarranted and unwanted intrusions into their lives and those of their family".

His firm has notified five publications of the couple's intention to take legal action against them.

"A London firm of solicitors is handling other actions and I believe we will jointly end up suing about 30 publications world-wide," said Mr Tweed.

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