This afternoon Little Mix confirmed to fans that Jesy Nelson has decided to leave the group.

Little Mix formed in 2011 on The X Factor, and last month they announced that Nelson was taking "extended time off" from the band "for private medical reasons".

When announcing news of Nelson's official departure from the group via Twitter today (14 December), Little Mix wrote, "After an amazing nine years together Jesy has made the decision to leave Little Mix. This is an incredibly sad time for all of us but we are fully supportive of Jesy."

"We love her very much and agree that it is so important that she does what is right for her mental health and well-being," Little Mix continued. "We are still very much enjoying our Little Mix journey and the three of us are not ready for it to be over."

Little Mix added, "We know that Jesy leaving the group is going to be really upsetting news for our fans. We love you guys so much and are so grateful for your loyalty and continued support of all of us."

Little Mix released their sixth album Confetti last month.