Britney, Justin Continue To Shoot Down Breakup Claims

Couple issue statement in attempt to put rumors to rest.

Amid rampant tabloid rumors, Britney Spears and ‘NSYNC’s Justin Timberlake have issued a statement insisting that they are still very much a couple.

“To set it straight, both of them are very busy and focusing on their careers,” read the statement, which was issued Wednesday (March 20). “They love each other very much and have not broken up. The demands on their time have naturally created a significant time apart, which could be misconstrued as a more permanent situation.”

Spears herself shot down the breakup rumors in an interview with MTV Italy over a week ago (see “Britney Spears Denies Reports Of Split With Justin Timberlake” ), but the rumor mill has continued to churn.

Reports pop up almost daily in the New York tabloids with eyewitness accounts of the two dancing with prospective new significant others. Even Us Weekly is giving the story credence, putting the headline “It’s Over” on the cover of the magazine’s issue out this Friday (March 22). Citing unnamed friends who claim to be close to ‘NSYNC, Us Weekly reports that the power-pop couple are quite combative, breaking up often only to make up later, “but not this time. They’re done.”

“As for spottings in clubs, [we] are both young and like to dance,” Spears and Timberlake said via their statement.

One of the reports that purported to prove that Timberlake was courting new prospects was also debunked: Though the New York Post ran a photo depicting Timberlake lunching with another woman, she turned out to be his agent, Shani Rosenzweig.