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Navajo President Says Relationship With Wife Has Ended

Rick Abasta/Navajo Nation

The Navajo Nation president says he and his wife of 17 years have parted ways.

Russell Begaye said in a statement that Kyoon Chung wanted to live privately and not be involved in the tribal government or subject to media scrutiny.

Begaye's relationship with Chung has been shrouded in mystery. She lives in Georgia and was not at Begaye's side on the campaign trail. He rarely has referenced her since he took office.

The absence of Chung left a void in the tribe's Office of the First Lady, a ceremonial post for wives to promote literacy, healthy living and anti-drunken driving efforts.

Begaye's spokesman, Mihio Manus, declined to say Thursday whether the two initiated divorce proceedings or finalized a divorce.

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