Zayn Leaves One Direction: Malik Quits, 1D To Continue Without Him

After generating a lot of headlines lately, it has been announced that Zayn Malik is leaving One Direction. There had been some speculation that Malik and the band might permanently part ways, but many 1D fans are still left stunned that it has actually happened.

Zayn Malik's departure confirmation came via the One Direction Facebook page. Though Zayn, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, Harry Styles, and Niall Horan have been a tight group in the five years the band has been together, it seems that the time has come for a big change.

Malik wrote the following.

"My life with One Direction has been more than I could ever have imagined. But, after five years, I feel like it is now the right time for me to leave the band. I'd like to apologise to the fans if I've let anyone down, but I have to do what feels right in my heart."
The One Direction star adds as follows.
"I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight. I know I have four friends for life in Louis, Liam, Harry, and Niall. I know they will continue to be the best band in the world."
The band says that while they're sad to see Zayn go, they respect his decision and they will continue on with One Direction. They share that they are planning a new album, their fifth, that they hope to release later this year.

As Gossip Cop notes, Malik's departure from the group comes just six days after he left the band in the midst of their Asian tour. He missed concert dates in Manila and Jakarta, but he had been expected to rejoin the group soon.

There have been a lot of rumors swirling over Malik's break from the tour, especially in the midst of drama regarding alleged cheating and his relationship with Little Mix singer Perrie Edwards. Malik and Edwards have been engaged since 2013, but 1D fans have been waiting to see whether the relationship would survive these cheating allegations.

As most would expect, many fans are feeling very emotional about the news that Zayn Malik is leaving One Direction. Everybody will be quite anxious to see what comes of Malik next and how remaining band members Niall Horan, Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, and Liam Payne manage to carry on in 1D without Zayn.

[Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images]