Rebekah Brooks resigned from her post as CEO of News International today over the phone hacking scandal.
In a statement today, she said: "At News International we pride ourselves on setting the news agenda for the right reasons. Today we are leading the news or the wrong ones.
"The reputation of the company we love so much, as well as the press freedoms we value so highly, are all at risk.
"As Chief Executive of the company, I feel a deep sense of responsibility for the people we have hurt and I want to reiterate how sorry I am for what we now know to have taken place.
"I have believed that the right and responsible action has been to lead us through the heat of the crisis. However my desire to remain on the bridge has made me a focal point of the debate.
"This is now detracting attention from all our honest endeavours to fix the problems of the past.
Therefore I have given Rupert and James Murdoch my resignation. While it has been a subject of discussion, this time my resignation has been accepted.
"Rupert’s wisdom, kindness and incisive advice has guided me throughout my career and James is an inspirational leader who has shown me great loyalty and friendship.
"I would like to thank them both for their support."
The news comes despite Brooks telling News of the World staff last week that she would not step down after 200 redundancies. Pressure for her to quit has been growing as the second biggest shareholder of News Corporation, Saudi Prince bin Talal told told BBC Newsnight she "has to go" and Prime Minister David Cameron said he would accept her resignation.
Elisabeth Murdoch told the Daily Telegraph that she holds Brooks responsible for the handling of the scandal and is said to be furious over the furore surrounding her her father's media empire.
Brooks is due to appear before the Home Affairs Select Committee hearing into the
phone-hacking scandal on Tuesday. James and Rupert Murdoch, who have until today supported Brooks to stay, will now be attending the hearing, despite previously saying they would not be there.
Brooks added: "I have worked here for 22 years and I know it to be part of the finest media company in the world.
"News International is full of talented, professional and honourable
people. I am proud to have been part of the team and lucky to know so
many brilliant journalists and media executives.
"I leave with the happiest of memories and an abundance of friends.
"As you can imagine recent times have been tough. I now need to
concentrate on correcting the distortions and rebutting the allegations
about my record as a journalist, an editor and executive.
"My resignation makes it possible for me to have the freedom and the time
to give my full cooperation to all the current and future inquiries,
the police investigations and the CMS appearance."
Her resignation comes after the family of murdered schoolgirl Milly
Dowler demanded Brooks resign and take responsibility for the
Despite the calls for the News International CEO to "do the honourable
thing", Murdoch stood by Brooks, who was editor at the News of the
World at the time Milly disappeared.
New Zealand born Tom Mockridge, previously CEO of Sky Italia, is due to replace her as the CEO of News International, and News International have said a series of apologies are due to be published in their papers this weekend.
News Corporation's bid to buy the remaining 60 per cent of BSkyB was shelved earlier this week but Prince bin Talal said that the plan will "come back".