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King Harald’s sick leave extended

Norway’s elderly monarch, King Harald V, won’t be back at work until at least April 22, after doctors extended his ongoing sick leave after an infection earlier this year by two more weeks. Staff at the Royal Palace announced Thursday that  Crown Prince Haakon will continue to function as regent in the meantime.

King Harald and Crown Prince Haakon at the opening of Parliament two years ago. PHOTO: Stortinget/Peter Mydske

King Harald “is in rehabilitation after his hospital stays earlier this winter, and still needs more time before coming back to work,” the palace stated late Thursday afternoon. “The king is therefore on sick leave for two new weeks, until April 22.”

Queen Sonja and Crown Princess Mette-Marit will also step in for the king, hosting along with Crown Prince Haakon the next reception for winners of royal medals on April 9. The queen, meanwhile, will visit Melhus and Skaun on April 16 and the crown prince will still carry out an official visit to the West Coast of the US in mid-April, visiting among other places the University of California at Berkeley where he studied as a young man.

The crown prince has earlier stated that his father was getting better after falling ill with an unspecified infection during a private holiday in Malaysia in connection with his 87th birthday in February. He hasn’t been seen in public since and ended up also needing a pacemaker, and a special SAS medevac jet was sent to the Malaysian island of Langkawi to bring him and Queen Sonja home.

The queen told state broadcaster NRK during a visit to a new woman’s health institution in Oslo earlier on Thursday that her husband, “fortunately was doing very, very well, moving steadily forward,” only to see his sick leave extended later in the day.

NewsinEnglish.no staff

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