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Brad Pitt Praises 'Heroic' Angelina Jolie, Thanks Medical Team, After Actress Has Double Mastectomy To Reduce Breast Cancer Risk

14/05/2013 17:18 BST | Updated 14/07/2013 10:12 BST

Brad Pitt has praised his partner Angelina Jolie for her "heroic" choice in opting for a double mastectomy, to reduce her chance of getting breast cancer.

In a statement released to the Evening Standard, the actor said:

"Having witnessed this decision first hand, I find Angie's choice, as well as so many others like her, absolutely heroic. I thank our medical team for their care and focus.

"All I want for is for her to have a long and healthy life, with myself and our children. This is a happy day for our family."

Jolie had earlier written in the New York Times about her decision to have the operation, having discovered that she was carrying the BRCA1 gene, making her chances of getting breast cancer higher than average.

The 'Tomb Raider' actress said she finished the three months of medical procedures on April 27, and added: "During that time I have been able to keep this private and to carry on with my work."

As well as describing the support of her children, Jolie singled out her partner Pitt for being "loving and supportive". She wrote: "Brad was at the Pink Lotus Breast Center, where I was treated, for every minute of the surgeries. We managed to find moments to laugh together. We knew this was the right thing to do for our family and that it would bring us closer. And it has."

Other celebrities have come forward to praise Jolie for describing her experience, including previous cancer sufferer Sheryl Crowe, and Liberty X singer Michelle Heaton, who has undergone the same operation.