The United States presidential hopeful Herman Cain has announced he will withdraw from the race for the Republican nomination.
His decision follows accusations by two women that he sexually harassed them while he was president of a trade lobbying group in the 1990s - accusations he vehemently denies.
The final blow came this week, when Atlanta businesswoman Ginger White claimed she had had a 13-year extramarital affair with Mr Cain that ended only eight months ago.
The BBC reports that the dramatic announcement effectively ends a campaign that took Mr Cain, a former pizza executive who rose from humble origins, to the front ranks of a Republican field despite his lack of political experience.
The ABC, quoting AFP reports, says Mr Cain told supporters in Atlanta that "false and unproved allegations" had created a cloud of doubt over him and his campaign.
"That spin hurts," he said. "It hurts my wife, it hurts my family, it hurts me and it hurts the American people because you are being denied solutions to our problems."
Mr Cain said he would endorse another Republican for the party's nomination in the near future, and vowed to continue to speak out in the future despite his decision not to go forward.